I went to Challacombe yesterday in the hope of finding a marsh fritillary butterfly, one of our rarest species. It is early in their flight season but as it was a sunny day I was hopeful. I was rewarded …. but they can be very fickle …
Skulking in the grass
Not opening its wings …
Finally after 15 minutes ….. perfect
Despite the cold nights and cool days there is still a red admiral battling on in my garden into November.
Sitting aloft an elm leaf the red admiral shows signs of a previous encounter with a bird.
Wonder if it will be around next?
Nice to find a large dragonfly flying around the garden
It finally settled and revealed itself as a Southern Hawker
This is Gatekeeper – lovely orange and brown with 2 white spots on each wing
Quite a lot of butterflies on the wing in the garden today
8 species of butterfly in the garden yesterday
A cracking Red Admiral
A Large Skipper
A Speckled Wood
And a Silver-washed Fritillary
It was a sunny morning when I left Exeter yesterday to go to Dartmoor but as the afternoon progressed it clouded over and eventually broke into heavy rain. I was therefore quite lucky to find what I went to Dartmoor to see.
A Marsh Fritillary sunning itself as the sun broke through the clouds momentarily
In total I saw 6 Marsh Fritillaries in the rhos pastures at Challacombe
If you look carefully individual butterflies are all subtly different in their markings
Marsh Fritillaries are now a very rare species but do flourish in a few selected locations on Dartmoor (and elsewhere)
I also found a couple of Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries – another rare and declining species for which Dartmoor is another stronghold
Just before the heavy rain arrived I found this individual
Amazing details and colours in the wings
Here is a shot of a Pearl-bordered Fritillary I photographed a few years ago at Hembury Woods
It’s raining outside and there were only two moths in my trap overnight ….
So instead here is a lovely Red Admiral I photographed a couple of weeks ago when it was sunny