Whenever I see them , I think how sad it is that such a beautiful , migratory butterfly , cannot stand our winter , and that the entire population in the country dies out each year , and has to depend on fresh colonists from Europe and Africa each year , even though they do breed here during June/July . Their undoing seems to be the need to migrate North all the time , and obviously meeting colder , wetter winters . This year's migration has not been a good one , but some years they migrate here in their millions . The most numerous species recorded today , was surprisingly the Speckled Wood , having found five , sunning themselves on an Elder , in a sunny corner of the cricket field . The full count was - Meadow Brown (4) , Large White (3) , Small White (4- photo below) , Painted Lady (1) , Speckled Wood (8) , Green Veined White (3) and Common Blue (1) . Not a butterfly , but a butterfly to be , I found this Comma caterpillar on the edge of one of the meadows .
The grounds of Down House are great for fungi , especially Waxcaps , with some really rare ones , that hopefully will be out on my next visit . Today , amongst the grass on one of the lawns was Clavaria vermicularis - White Spindles . Not far away was a member of the Waxcap family ,
A very common fungi the books say , but also 'poisonous-possibly deadly' .
On the way home , I called again at Keston Ponds in vain for Small Red Eyed Damselfy . In the breezy conditions , I found Common Darter , Red Eyed Damselfy ,
Common Blue Damselfly .