Monday, 3 August 2009

Monday 3rd.August 2009

No prizes for guessing where I headed this morning . On the strength of the White Letter Hairstreak found yesterday , I was back at High Elms , looking for more . First searched , was the area on the edge of the Conservation Field , but once again , none were found . A Rabbit , was found that seemed quite tame , till I got too close for it's liking , and it moved to the other side of the stock fence . Only other thing of interest found that side of the road was the female version of the Scorpion Fly , the male of which I posted a few days ago . As I said then , the female lacks the scorpion tail , and instead , has an ovipositor , with which she lays her eggs , an she has a smaller beak . I couldn't wait to get up to the Orchid Bank , but had to pass the Silver Washed Fritillary egg laying trees on the way . In the small glade , there were 7 female SWFs , not all egg laying , some nectaring , and being constantly harassed by the males . In the glade between that and the Orchid Glade , another 4 females , all egg laying , one pictured . When I got to the stand of Hemp Agrimony , at the end of the Bank , the sun was only just arriving , with very little about , so I headed for the other stands , inside the fenced off Bank . There was a keener breeze here , making it quite cool , but as I was walking , a butterfly lifted out of the vegetation under foot , and flew a short distance . I passed it over as a Gatekeeper from the size of it in flight , but not when it landed . I took a couple of shots , then as it was cool , offered it my finger , which it accepted eagerly . It was the largest WLH that I have ever seen , and , showed damage to the wings , so was obviously not newly emerged . Once it warmed up , it flew off happily .When I got back to the original stand of Hemp Agrimony , a speck fell onto the ground vegetation , and on inspection , another WLH was found on some Dogwood , and could well be the one I saw yesterday . I then took up position in the middle of the stand , and waited to see what turned up . Not surprisingly , the first visitor was a male SWF ,
closely followed by another WLH , trebling yesterday's count , and both this and the previous one were both in view at the same time .
a Painted Lady followed ,then the dark underwing of a Peacock .An unusual visitor to the Hemp Agrimony , was a Speckled Wood ,then I was bombarded by an enormous Red Tailed Bumble Bee . Just before leaving , this Peacock , with a forewing that hasn't developed properly arrived . The forewing didn't seem to bother it flying , and most certainly didn't stop it nectaring .
Two days on The Greensand Ridge awaits , will there be anything to post ?


Ken Browne. said...

Hi Greenie.
Nice Butterfly shots. I am sure you will find some kind of wildlife over the next 2 days on the Ridge, weather permitting.

Rambling Rob said...

I saw a PL with a forewing like that Peacock's yesterday, Greenie, also apparently flying well. But I'd like to see a WLH - better find some Hemp Agrimony and hang about, I think. Also never seen a Scorpion Fly. So much to see yet..

ShySongbird said...

Another great post Greenie, you really do know where to go to see Nature. I haven't seen as many Peacock Butterflies this year as I used to. Can I trouble you to have a quick look at my post and see if my White Legged Damselfly is correctly identified?

Dean said...

Two days on The Greensand Ridge awaits , will there be anything to post ?

I`m sure there will, Greenie. Good luck, all the same.

Kingsdowner said...

Oh, most impressive! What next, a close encounter with a Camberwell Beauty.