Wednesday, 2 July 2008

White Admiral butterfly

OK, I know these are not great pictures, as Tracy had to take them while running after the butterfly, but we wanted to put them up for people to see.

We've had a huge number of butterflies and moths in the wood since we coppiced it, including Red Admiral, Peacock, Brimstone, Speckled Yellow, Holly Blue and more. This time though we thought we saw a White Admiral, which Steve Wheatley of Rother Butterfly Conservation has asked people to look out for. So, Tracy set off chasing it, and managed to get these pictures. It looks like it's a female of the species. If you can't see it in the second picture, it's perched on the stick near the centre.

It's also interesting to see exactly why the butterfly was where it was. Here's the area it was flying around:
It's on the perimeter of the area we coppiced, between the light and dark portions of the wood. Also in evidence was the honeysuckle where it lays its eggs:
Now I know honeysuckle is a pain when felling trees, as it tangles everything up, and we are making an effort to stop it smothering regrowth on the coppice stools and the small self-seeded oaks. However, we are leaving it where it grows on mature trees, as not only does it look nice, but it is also important for these butterflies and other creatures too.


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