Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Mendip Butterflies etc 14/5/14

A bright sunny day is forecast so it's off to the Crook Peak area of the Mendips too look for butterflies.
Starting at the lower slopes it wasn't long before we saw our first Brown Argus in fact they could be seen everywhere and were the most numerous butterfly seen today.
The slopes are now covered in a variety of wild flowers and grasses from the bright yellow Rock Rose to large clumps of Scarlet Pimpernel etc.  The colourful array of plants and grasses in turn attracting a total of 11 species of butterfly seen today.
Great to see Small Heath and Common Blue on the wing and also plenty of Grizzled Skippers and a few Dingy Skippers.  Also seen were a few Brimstones, Speckled Wood and Large and Green Veined White. Walking up towards the peak sunning themselves on the rocks we spotted a few Wall Browns.  3 Pearl Boardered Fritillaries were seen in a gorse / grass area but they would only settle for no more than a second!
Not too many birds around apart from Stonechats, Whitethroat, Meadow Pipit, Linnets, Swallows, Green Woodpecker and a Buzzard and Kestrel.  
A great butterfly day though with stunning views as a bonus!

Brown Argus - a good number of these to be seen

Brown Argus - a friendly pair

Small Heath - first time view of this butterfly this year. Look quite orange in flight.

Wall Brown - catching the sun on a rock. Almost look like a fritillary in flight.  A good number of these seen towards the peak.

Meadow Pipit. The Mendips quite a stronghold for this pipit.

Stonechat - female.  The Mendips being a great area for seeing Stonechats.  It seems that a good number have come through the mild winter.

Grizzled Skipper - bigger numbers this year than last but it appears that there are fewer Dingy Skippers around.

Rock Rose - some areas of Wavering Down can be covered in this lovely flower.

Common Blue - what a beautiful blue looking quite large when seen with the Brown Argus.  

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