Wall to wall cloud welcomed the morning of the Field Trip to High Elms , with Silver Washed Fritillaries being the main target . I left a bit early for a look at the Ash tree on the Common , but only got 4/5 sightings high up , no specimens coming down onto the lower vegetation . Leaving the car park , a brown flash by the barrier had me stopping and photographing a juvenile Robin , that was happy to sit and pose . This turned out to be the only shot I took today .
The weather was no better at High Elms , and the 19 species seen yesterday , in much better conditions , seemed like a dream . I was relieved when we made our first stop at a pathside Buddleia bush to find SWF and White and Red Admiral nectaring on the flowers . Burnt Gorse was bathed in cloud , but we managed to find the odd butterfly species and topped up with a few day flying moths . Right down the far end , a single Marbled White , Small Copper and Large Skipper raised the hopes of better to come . We actually got some sunshine , which increased the activity , so we headed for the first of the glades where the SWF lay their eggs . The SWF sightings increased , including females , but no egg laying was observed although one courting pair was seen . We did search for , and find , eggs that had been layed on a Scots Pine . More SWF sightings on the way to , and on the Orchid Bank , then one of the group spotted a small butterfly on a Hazel bush , and White-lettered Hairstreak was added to the list . This shot of the species was taken a couple of weeks ago . A second was found on the Orchid Bank itself , to be followed by a third after lunch in the Conservation Field , the advantage of many pairs of eyes .
The look around the Conservation Field did not produce any new species , but several fresh Brown Argus and another Marbled White were recorded .
By the end of the visit , the same 19 species of Butterfly that I recorded yesterday had been found , plus WLH , Holly Blue and the Marbled Whites , bringing the total count to 22 species , with a probable 23rd. , when Hairstreak sized specimens were seen in silhouette , high in an Ash tree , probably Purple .
11 hours ago