Six spot burnet moth

This is a six spot burnet moth (Zygaena filipendulae), a dayflying nectar feeder, photographed on the reserve’s plentiful, nectar-rich, tufted vetch.

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Comma

A comma butterfly (Polygonia c-album), so-called for the small white comma-shaped mark on underside of its hind wing.

All images take in the reserve by Clive Knight

Marbled white

The distinctive marbled white (Melanargia galathea) is common and widespread in southern England. At this time of year it chooses unimproved meadow grassland, showing a preference for purple flowers such as wild marjoram, thistles, knapweeds and red clover. The caterpillars feed on grasses particularly red fescue.

All images taken in the reserve

[1] Mating marbled whites by Ian Bushell) [2] Marbled white male by Ian Bushell [3]Marbled white feeding on red clover by Cheryl Cronnie
Header Image by Cheryl Cronnie

Conservation Status
Butterfly Conservation priority: Low
European status: Not threatened

Chasing butterflies

I have had a few early mornings in the reserve in an effort to photograph butterflies before they get too active. It has often been quite breezy, which has made it challenging to get some good images. But one morning I was fortunate to find this common blue that I was able to get reasonably close to, and during the periods when the wind briefly dropped, I was able to fire off a few shots. 

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A small skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris) feeding on red clover, photographed in the reserve by Ian Bushell.
Conservation priority: low.
Distribution: common and widespread.
Population trend since 1970’s – down by 7%

Speckled wood

A beautiful photograph of a speckled wood (Pararge aegeria) against a backdrop of buttercups, taken in the reserve by Cheryl Cronnie.

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Butterflies

The spring weather has brought our butterflies out of hibernation. On Wednesday, Ian reported a peacock, brimstones, commas and a small tortoiseshell.

1&2 Brimstone 3&4 Comma 5&6 Small tortoiseshell.
Header Image: peacock by DKG

Oak lutestring

During last week’s moth trapping in Village Green, Ian and Hugo identified an oak lutestring (Cymatophorima diluta), a UK Biodiversity Action Plan Priority Species, classified as scarce and local. This is the thirteenth BAP priority species of Lepidoptera identified in the reserve: the hard work we put into our woodland habitat is paying off!

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