May 05 SWOG meeting about butterflies
Last weekend we had a butterfly ID and information day in woods near Rye. This was led by Steve Wheatley of Butterfly conservation. There are BC groups all over the country, well worth getting in touch with your local representative.
We started with Steve giving us a talk about butterflies, and why identifying them and keeping centralised records is important. He needs lots of people like us to note down what we see and send records to him periodically, so that they can keep track of species numbers and use the information in scientific research and also in planning permission issues and other stuff like that. He also gave us some tips on how to ID butterflies, including the differences between the various white species, and using knowledge on which months the butterflies can be seen to help narrow down the choices.
We took a walk along the wayleave and also along our wildlife corridor, stopping at various points to talk about what we were seeing. Mike and I had coppiced along an old ride last winter to let more light into the wood and to encourage butterflies and birds. There is a lot of honey suckle in this section and we are pleased to see so many butterflies and birds using their new road!
There was patchy cloud, so it wasn’t a perfect day for butterfly spotting, but we still saw quite a few. Here’s the ones Mike got pictures of. A Peacock, looking a bit ragged:
A Speckled Yellow – actually a day-flying moth rather than a butterfly.
and in the wildlife corridor, where we were felling just a few months ago, as well as several butterflies we found an adder, which had probably been basking in the sun:
It was a brilliant time to relax and chatter and find out loads more information. Anyone else like to hold an event in their woods? Please get in touch with me.