Update Number 5
As I write, storm Katie is preparing to do her worst, and she is not in a good mood. Wind, rain and thunderstorms are all due over the next 18 hours. It is difficult to believe that spring has actually sprung, but it certainly has, and the glorious weather of Good Friday allowed many to see their first butterflies of the year. For many, numbers were impressive. Others were grateful to see single specimens.
Prior to the Good Friday emergence I had received only two reports, one of a Peacock in Congerstone (Tony Teperek) on the 16th of March, and a Small Tortoiseshell in the Loughborough garden of Helen Ingall on the 21st. Friday the 25th of March may well go down as THE day that the butterfly season truly began. Two ‘new’ species for the year were recorded on this day, with a Red Admiral being spotted at Sapcote Garden Centre by yours truly (Richard Jeffery) and the first Commas being seen by Geof Adams in his Broughton Astley garden, Steve Lee in his Enderby garden, Malcolm Hupman at Rutland Water and 3 individuals seen at Melton Country Park by Paul Ruddoch.
Peacocks were recorded by Win Walsh in her Earl Shilton garden, Geof Adams in Broughton Astley allotments, Paul Ruddoch at Melton CP, and AJ Cann at Ulverscroft. Many sightings of Small Tortoiseshells were sent in, mostly of single specimens taking advantage of the early spring sunshine. Ann Gleave noted one at Thurnby Lodge, AJ Cann saw one at Ulverscroft, Brian Thompson reported one in Kibworth Beauchamp, Geof Adams spotted a singleton in his Broughton Astley garden and also on the allotments, two were seen in the Oadby garden of David Foulds, 4 by Steve Lee in Enderby and 11 in Melton CP by Paul Ruddoch. David Foulds also noted a solitary individual in Fludes Lane, Oadby an ancient Right of Way now looked after by the team at Brocks Hill Country Park.
Brimstone – Photograph by Richard M. Jeffery
Good Friday also saw the emergence of the Brimstone. Single specimens were seen by AJ Cann at Ulverscroft, Geof Adams in Broughton Astley, Win Walsh in Earl Shilton, and I recorded one at work in Sapcote Garden Centre. Ann Gleave reported 2 at Thurnby Lodge, David Foulds noted 2 in Oadby, Matthew Harpin saw 2 in Ravenstone and also 12 in Jubilee Woods, Normanton le Heath. Paul Ruddoch also reported a round dozen in Melton CP. Steve Lee spent 3 hours watching butterflies in his Enderby garden (not a bad way to spend a morning in my humble opinion) and made over 40 sightings of Brimstone – how many individuals this equates to is not certain as they were coming and going constantly, but there was a maximum of 3 at any one given time.
Thank you to everyone for getting out in the spring sunshine and for submitting this information for sharing amongst the group. If I have missed anyone who has reported a sighting, then please accept my apologies, and I’ll include it next time.
The key purpose of the L & R Updates is to keep everyone up-to-date with current sightings, provide information on suitable sites and habitat, and to discuss conservation issues. The Updates rely on you, the subscribers to send in the information. Many of you have already signed up to the East Midlands Butterfly Conservation Blog page. I have mentioned on several occasions that this Update will be posted on a regular basis on this page. Those of you who haven’t yet signed up, and wish to remain part of this Update ‘group’ are urged to sign up as soon as possible, as this will be the last issue sent out by direct email. I would like to ask each one of you to visit the EMBC website’s Blog page and ‘Subscribe to Blog via Email’. All you need to do is fill in your email address, click Subscribe and you’ll be ready to receive future posts for Leicestershire and Rutland, as well as Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire if you wish, by email alert.
Please use the following link to go the Blog page and enter your email address where requested, www.eastmidlands-butterflies.org.uk/blog/
, and once you have done so could I please ask you to let me know that you have so that I can update my records accordingly. If, at any point in the future you no longer wish to receive the Updates, you can simply ‘unsubscribe’.
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Once again, many thanks for being part of this group, and continue to enjoy your ‘butterflying’.