Saturday, 4 August 2012

Butterflies at last!

The wet summer has not been great for the UK's butterflies, so it was pleasing to see so many this afternoon, especially as we had friends who'd been helped in coppicing in Sweep Wood visiting to see the wildlife benefits of their work! Some of them lived nearby, others were from Rother Guardians.

Here's one of the old favourites, a Peacock:

DSC_4273 Peacock butterfly

The Buddleja it's settled on has self-seeded at the top of Sweep Wood - we have quite a few garden escapees up there, and while I wouldn't have planted this one in a woodland, as it's arrived by itself I'm quite happy to leave it - and the butterflies are delighted I'm sure!

Just as a reminder, Sweep Wood used to look like this:

Then we got busy coppicing and it looked like this:

And just a year or two later it looks like this:

DSC_8137 foxgloves

The hill in Sweep wood had lots of other butterflies present, especially Meadow Browns and Gatekeepers:
DSC_4236 Meadow Brown

DSC_4203 Gatekeeper

DSC_4196 Gatekeeper

There were also various White butterflies, but I didn't get photos of them. Lots of dragonflies too - remember none of these insects were to be seen here before we did the coppicing:
DSC_4252 dragonfly

DSC_4260 dragonfly

Heading further into the woods we saw several Speckled Wood butterflies:
DSC_4233 Speckled Wood

White Admirals:
DSC_4190 White Admiral

DSC_4187 White Admiral

and a beetle too...
DSC_4229 beetle

In the wayleave were Comma butterflies and more dragonflies; I got a rare opportunity to photograph two together:
DSC_4215 dragonflies

We also saw this wasp feeding on Common Figwort - apparently they're a good pollinator for them:
DSC_4209 Wasp and Common Figwort

DSC_4207 Wasp and Common Figwort

Great to see all of these creatures around again!


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