July 2018 Task Day

Thanks to everyone who came along to Sunday’s Butterfly Monitoring Walk. It was a good day, considering the heat, many species would have been resting up and sheltering for the latter part of the walk. 20 species were identified and 501 individual butterflies were counted. A brief but close-up view of the Purple Hairstreak was a lovely way to start the walk, and encountering Silver-washed Fritillaries in the woodland glades was a lovely highlight, incredibly graceful and powerful fliers, a species indicative that high summer has arrived in the woodland glades. Finishing up, the Chalk Hill Blues are beginning their emergence in earnest now on the banks. The first few females were out and already egg laying, but still greatly outnumbered by the males who were all jostling for the best spots. A 158 were counted in total (the best numbers being towards White Hill). Hopefully, they will continue to increase in number, and should shortly be joined by the second generation Adonis on the banks. Hopefully, soon we’ll get some rain, nectar sources must be beginning to run low by now and, if the larval food plants don’t flourish, next year may not be good for butterflies. In addition to Butterfly monitoring, thanks to the six hardy souls who tidied up the BWAG equipment store (not a popular job!). Tools were cleaned, inventory updated and everything all neatly packed away. (Photos courtesy of Wendy Smith and Rob Pennington)