Sunday, 18 May 2014

Mendip Magic - Dragonflies to Butterflies 17/5/14

Our trek started at East Harptree woods and across the fields to West Harptree, Hinton Blewett, along the reservoirs near Litton and eventually back to our starting point a total of 9.5 miles.
Plenty of hills to climb with stunning views across to Chew Vally Lake as a reward.  Many fields a golden yellow of Buttercups and some open land full of Bluebells just simply beautiful.  The wild flowers everywhere are a delight to see from Stitchwort, Campion, Bugle, Ramsons, Vetch, Cow Parsley, etc the hedgerows are looking amazing.
A great sunny day for butterflies and those seen along the route were Peacock, Orange Tip, quite a few Brimstones, Speckled Wood, Large White, Green Veined White, Common Blue, Small Tortoiseshell and our first Small Copper of the year.
Saw our first Beautiful Demoiselle along a fast flowing stream and the lovely coloured Broad Bodied Chaser by a large pond. It was fascinating to watch the Chaser always return to its 'perch'!
On close inspection of the area around the pond the Spotted Orchids are in full leaf and have their flower stems forming.  There will be loads of these orchids appearing here soon.
Passing the 2 Small reservoirs we saw Great Crested Grebes, Little Grebe, Mallards, Tufted Duck, nesting Coots and a Moorhen. A Green Woodpecker was also seen along the way.
The stars of the day had to be the wildflowers, insects, bird song and stunning views.  We are going to have to return in a couple of weeks to see those orchids!

Bluebells - breathtaking with the sun on them

View across to Chew Valley Lake

Brimstone - a bit raggy and wind blown

Beautiful Demoiselle - great to watch in flight and brilliant colours

Face On - Beautiful Demoiselle

Small Copper - just the one seen today in an amazing Buttercup Meadow.

Buttercup Festival!

Tranquility by the reservoirs - nice lot of birds to be found here all seasons

Broad Bodied Chaser - great colours and two seen around the large pond

Broad Bodied Chaser - always came back to the same perch

Common Blue - female 

Across the fields - just love Springtime everything greening up!  What therapy!

Green Veined Whites - plenty on the wing today

Chew Valley Lake

Woodland - springing to life

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