Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Thu 14 Apr 2011 20:12

Hello Folks,
Today I had my first Green-veined White this year at Lamberton. Also had 5 Small Tortoiseshell, 4 feeding together on the blue flowers of the rock garden plant Lithodora diffusa 'Picos' and 1 Peacock.
R McB
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Fri 15 Apr 2011 17:57

Hello Folks,
A bit overcast and still with a touch to much wind on the east side of Berwickshire today. My first Orange Tip of the year, 1 at Reston along with 2 whites that were a bit fast and to far away to identify.
R McB
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby IAC » Sun 17 Apr 2011 16:35

Hi all,
Another beautiful day...very warm away from the coastal breeze. Last Sunday I travelled down the Whiteadder from Blue Stone Ford too Edrington...this Sunday I did it in reverse. I was mainly looking for Speckled Wood. After a few hours of false alarms...I pretty much gave up. The temperature was getting close to stifling and I realised I had now to scramble up a sheer riverbank cliff full of Hawthorn and Bramble snags. For entertainment and too take my mind off the task..I followed an intrepid Orange Tip up the hill as he sampled nectar from the violets..he got to a sunny clearing when...wooooshhh.....intercepted by the unmistakeable Speckled Wood...suddenly I had the energy and vigour of a youth....it did not last long....the Speckled Wood like a matador easily saw the approach of a lumbering sweaty oxen crashing through the thicket....I decided to give up that strategy...The Speckled Wood finally revealed his territorial perches...after a little more observation...I got a wee bit closer...and was treated to an incoming rival male who he chased off in a tumbling skyward tussle. I am delighted....

Also today many Orange Tip...well in excess of 50 males..but only 4 females...also mating pairs and little orange eggs on the riverside Garlic Mustard. Green Veined White, Small White, Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock...good numbers. No Large White yet...dont know why....they do tend to be later than the other whites...so plenty of time for them.

Iain.
Attachments
Speckie at Lambsmill 17042011_1.jpg
Speckled Wood at Lambsmill Edrington today.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby IAC » Tue 19 Apr 2011 17:17

Hi all,
By the Whiteadder at Chirnside today and later in the afternoon along the disused railwayline towards Reston
Huge numbers of Orange Tip just now...considering I counted 50+ on Sunday on a 3 to 4 mile stretch of riverbank...today in about a miles worth 20-25..so quite a number. They were also in evidence along the railwayline in lesser numbers..a dozen or so. Peacock and Small Tortoiseshell still in good numbers and keeping themselves in fairly good condition. A few Comma today as well as a lot more Green Veined. Small White are scarce again...not seeing so many away from the riverbanks....my theory is they are being attracted to the Oil Seed Rape fields in flower just now . Happily I finally found some Large White today...3 in all..big flapping bounding white flags nectaring high up in the Cherry trees.
The weather just now has become ridiculous....could realy find some use for this sunshine in late May, June time. I would think Speckled Wood will be up to speed by the weekend..at this rate Wall Brown, Small Copper,and Small Heath wont be far of either.

Iain.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Wed 20 Apr 2011 19:08

Hello Folks,
I cannot compete with the numbers of Orange Tips that Ian turns, up but it was nice to have one yesterday 19/4 and one today 20/4 in my garden at Lamberton, this is the first time I have ever had one in my garden in the past 14 years. Also seen in two tetrads next to the River Eye at Ayton, but again one male in each tetrad. Lots of Green-veined White in my garden, must cover my cauliflower plants.
R. McB
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby IAC » Wed 20 Apr 2011 20:42

Hi all,
Today I went on a speculative Small Copper hunt at Oldcastles, Billiemire and Pipers Knowe...utter failure. I did not see much in the way of butterfly activity all day despite the sunshine. All I got were glimpses of butterflies flying at pace in all directions...most being white butterflies that I could not properly identify. I did flush a Common Carpet at Billiemains..after much chasing. On getting home I read on the StAbbs rangers blog that a Small Copper was recorded on the transect yesterday. http://stabbsrangers.blogspot.com/ .


Iain.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby IAC » Thu 21 Apr 2011 17:04

Hi all,
Another search for Speckled Wood at Edrington today. A total of 9 found in a mile or so of riverbank scrub woodland. Very difficult to find the ones in the wood itself. They can dash quite rapidly in and out of sunlight to shade then disapear instantly. I found at least 1 very territorial male sitting tightly on his perch...chasing of bees and butterflies alike...always coming back and taking up his position again. Also observed a territorial tussle involving a pair of I presume males that lasted a good 10 minutes...unlike Peacock or Small Tortoiseshell they keep the tussle low key...and close to the ground and vegetation. Great fun to watch.

Iain.
Attachments
sw april21_1.jpg
Speckled Wood at Edrington today
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby NickMorgan » Thu 21 Apr 2011 19:56

Well done Iain. I have been checking a few sites in East Lothian looking for speckled woods without any luck so far. There have been a few sightings over the last couple of years along the east coast, so I guess they must be resident somewhere around there.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Fri 22 Apr 2011 19:55

Hello Folks,
Thick sea fog and only 9c on the coast at Lamberton. Went about 5 miles inland to Hutton Mill Bridge where it was warm and sunny and a different world. Walked up the side of the River Whiteadder and found 3 Comma, 7 Peacock, 5 Green-veived White and 12 male Orange Tip. The sun went behind a cloud and on the return walk did not see one butterfly in flight. No Small Tortoiseshell or what I had hoped to see - Speckled Wood.
R McB
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings April 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Sun 24 Apr 2011 18:21

Hello Folks,
I had a walk this afternoon in the woods alongside the River Eye next to Ayton Church Yard. 2 Comma, 3 Orange Tip, 1 Peacock and several Green Veined White.
At home at Lamberton I had 1 Red Admiral yesterday 23/4, the first here this year. Today there were 5, all brand new, smart looking ones. Warm and sunny.
R McB
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