The Butterfly Floats In Upon The Sunbeam.

Small Heath at Croft Hill Nature Trail. Photograph by Richard M. Jeffery

Small Heath at Croft Hill Nature Trail. Photograph by Richard M. Jeffery

 

Broom out the floor now, lay the fender by,

And plant this bee-sucked bough of woodbine there,

And let the window down. The butterfly 

Floats in upon the sunbeam, and………..

(Taken from June by Francis Ledwidge)

 

The end of May and the beginning of June have heralded the arrival of summer with mixed results for our Lepidoptera. The cold winds of late May and even the heatwave of early June have meant that butterfly numbers have been relatively low, although a few ‘new’ species for the year have finally put in an appearance. You have all been as vigilant as ever, and many thanks go to you all for submitting your sightings. In fact, there have so many records submitted that I will apologise in advance in case I inadvertantly miss out one or two. I will list your sightings by species.

 

Dingy Skipper:

17 May  –  2 @Hicks Lodge – Phil Dyer.  22 May  –  25+ @ Asfordby Hill – Paul Ruddoch.  22 May  –  2 @ Pick Triangle Wood – Andy Large.  22 May  –  4 @ New Lount NR – Matthew Harpin.  23 May  –  1 @ Bardon Hill – Richard Jeffery.  24 May  –  Bloody Oaks Quarry – Steve Lee.  28 May – Bagworth Heath Woods – Eliot Taylor.  29 May  –  Bloody Oaks Quarry – Alan Cann.  30 May  –  Pick Triangle Woods – Sue Howitt & Rob Davis. 02 June  –  2 north of Moira – Bas Forgham.  05 June  –  1 @ New Lount NR – Matthew Harpin.  06 June  –  2 @ Donisthorpe   Woodland Park.

Grizzled Skipper:

22 May  –  Welby – Steven Lewis.  24 May  –  Bloody Oaks Quarry – Steve Lee.  06 June  –  Langar Airfield – Bill Bacon.

Green Hairstreak:

22 May  –  4 @ Asfordby Hill – Paul Ruddoch.

Small Heath:

17 May  –  Ketton Quarry – Stephen Rawlinson & Rod Baker.  30 May  –  1 @ Croft Hill N.T. – Steve Lee.  04 June  –  Warren Hills – Matthew Harpin.  05 June  –  1 @ Croft Hill N.T. – Richard Jeffery.

Common Blue:

24 May  –  Bloody Oaks Quarry – Steve Lee.  27 May  –  Melton C.P. – Paul Ruddoch.  29 May  –  1 @ Bloody Oaks Quarry – Alan Cann.  30 May  –  Croft Hill N.T. – Steve Lee.  04 June  –  4 @ New Lount NR – Matthew Harpin.

Painted Lady:

17 May  –  Burrough Hill – Michael Betts (record courtesy of NatureSpot).  04 June  –  Coleorton garden – Matthew Harpin.  05 June  –  1 @ Croft Hill N.T. & 1 @ Earl Shilton garden – Richard Jeffery.  05 June  –  1 @ Broughton Astley garden – Geof Adams.  05 June  –  1 @ Kirby Muxloe garden, feeding on Choisya (Mexican Orange Blossom) – Lyn Bull.  05 June  –  2 @ Staunton Harold  – Matthew Harpin. 07 June  –  Kirby Muxloe library – Lyn Bull.

Wall Brown:

04 June  –  2 @ Warren Hills – Matthew Harpin.  06 June  –  3 @ Bardon Hill  –  Richard Jeffery.

Orange Tip:

22 May  –  1 @ Pick Triangle Wood – Andy Large.  29 May  –  1 @ Bloody Oaks Quarry – Alan Cann.  05 June  –  1 @ Croft Hill N.T. – Richard Jeffery.

Small Copper:

22 May  –  1 @ Bardon Hill – Matthew Harpin.

 

Day flying moth reports have been very few and far between so far this season, but Matthew Harpin recorded 2 Burnet Companion at New Lount Nature Reserve on the 22nd of May.

 

Sarah Proud (of Rutland Water NR) led a guided walk around Ketton Quarry on the 28th of May. Here the group recorded Green Hairstreak, Dingy Skipper, Grizzled Skipper, Small Heath, and the first reported Brown Argus.

 

The East Midlands Butterfly Conservation field trip to Warren Hills and Charnwood Lodge took place on Tuesday the 7th of June. The target species for the group were Wall Brown, Small Heath and Green Hairstreak. The latter failed to appear, prompting fears that the recent heatwave had brought about a premature end to the flight period, but Small Heath were present in good numbers with 10 being seen on Warren Hills and 13 at Charnwood Lodge. The Wall Brown was also fairly abundant with 11 individuals recorded on Warren Hills and 4 at Charnwood Lodge. Also at Charnwood, the group stumbled across a rather bedraggled Small Copper. Day flying moths were noted on both sites, with 10 Brown Silver-line recorded over the 2 sites, and singletons of Silver-ground Carpet, Green Carpet and the first reported (so far) Silver Y moth.

 

With the weather about to become changeable once more it will be interesting to see what appears over the coming days. Please continue to send in your sightings either directly by email or via our Facebook page – Butterflies and Moths of Leicestershire and Rutland.

For anyone taking part in the National Moth Night(s) between the 9th and 11th of June, please feel free to submit your sightings and I will compile a report for the next update.

Happy butterflying…….and mothing.

Posted in Leicestershire and Rutland Butterfly Line.