With things quiet on the bird front , butterflies have taken over . I have made several morning visits to local Purple Hairstreak sites , but haven't manage to find one at any of them . But whilst looking ,
I also failed to find a Chalkhill Blue when I visited the Kent BC site managed for them on Tuesday
I spent the rest of the morning wandering around the Downs , where I managed to record 14 species
The warmer weather has encouraged more chalk grassland plants to flower , like ,
I met up with fellow enthusiast Cliff who asked if I had seen the Privet Hawk Moth on a stile a bit back . I admitted that I had crossed the stile , but hadn't looked behind one of the supporting posts . I
Yesterday I did the full High Elms butterfly transect , which produced 13 species with as expected Meadow Brown and Ringlet way out in front . Small Skipper (32) , Marbled White (29 - 50% down on last year) , and Silver-washed Fritillary (9 including the first female of the year) , being the notables .
This morning , in perfect conditions , I made another visit to Dene Park for Purple Emperor . The conditions were right , but the PE didn't play ball . Several sightings at tree top level , a couple of sorties lower down but never landing , a brief landing by a female with half it's hindwing missing . Much frustration for the 6 or so on site , with no one managing to get a single shot . By 1230 , with the temperature 25C+ , I called it a day . Not a total waste though , as the visit provided an
9 hours ago