Thursday, 23 April 2015

Uskmouth Butterfly Transect 22nd April

Sheila and Fiona carried out the transect on Wednesday and recorded 125 butterflies of  9 species. 41 Peacock, 21 Green-veined White,11 Orange-tip, 16 Speckled Wood, 19 Large White, 4 Commas,,,,7 Small White, 4 Holly Blue and 2 Brimstone. Surprisingly there were no Small Tortoiseshell. A Red Admiral was seen, but off the transect.
There is an interesting article in the latest British Wildlife magazine, which I received yesterday, which compares phenology records from 1899 - 1914 to those of  1999 - 2014. The average 1st sighting of small white 100 years ago was 21st April and the average 1st sighting today is..... 21st April. For Orange-tip the average 1st sighting 100 years ago was 13th May, but today it is 24th April, 19 days earlier. The difference in the 2 fairly closely related species  is possibly related to the fact that Orange-tip are single brooded while Small White are multi-brooded.
Today, 23rd April, I saw my 1st Hairy Dragonfly of the year at Goldcliff, the earliest I have ever seen one, but not that surprising, given the resent warm weather.

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