Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

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Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Sun 01 May 2011 20:40

Hi all,
Today I ventured from Lamberton on the coast down the Berwickshire coastal path too Eyemouth. A cool sea breeze did not deter the suns ability to exhaust the weary traveller... :D 2 Small Copper at Lamberton and a Peacock...and few scattered Green Veined is all that was seen...all the way to Burnmouth. At Burnmouth at least I saw some Wall Brown...5 and Small Copper 4. Above the cliffs and on to Eyemouth...nothing....it was getting late in the day and the sea breeze was beginning to bite a little. At Blaikie though their is some respite,as the sea wall cuts out the easterly. 2 Wall Brown...one of them a female. 1 Small Tortoiseshell and a fantastic Hummingbird Hawkmoth....

Yesterday I treated myself to trip outwith the Berwickshire bounds to see a butterfly I had never before seen. The Green Hairstreak. So travelling to Galashiels I was very excited at the prospect. On a large slab of hillside covered in Bilberry, heather and scrub Juniper and Birch...I made my way uphill in search. After many bouts of depression and self doubt...3 hours of it...finally...as if by magic...2 tiny little tornados fired into the air spinning and turning...amazing. I waited eagerly for at least one of them to return...and one did..and landed only a few feet away. An incredible moment indeed. I was over the moon to see this butterfly...I have been looking for them within Berwickshire for the past few years...without any luck. But I am more determined than ever now to find Berwickshires very own Green Hairstreaks. I saw just how easy they can be to miss...as I said they are tiny...and they are green and like sitting on green things....GRRRRRRRRRR. :D

Iain.
Attachments
Hummingbird Hawk NT95266264.JPG
Hummingbird Hawk at Blaikie
Green Hair_1.jpg
Green Hairstreak at Gala
wall brown_1.jpg
Wall Brown female at Blaikie
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Tue 03 May 2011 20:34

Hi all,
These very cool easterly breezes are chasing butterflies into shelter...so....where their is shelter their are quite a few to be seen. Yesterday I walked the disused railwayline at Chirnside looking for Small Copper and Wall Brown. It took a long time to find the first Small Copper hidden away in a corner avoiding the cold wind. A little further on another 2 appeared on a sheltered slope. Green Veined White and Orange Tip in copious numbers. Peacock and Small Tortoiseshell found themselves in each others territory and in the shelter of a strip wood several scuffles were seen. Green Veined White nectaring on Sycamore flowers....I have not seen that before.

Today I ventured to Foulden Burn..in search of the same species...Small Copper and Wall.....this time no Small Coppers seen...but...4 Wall Brown. 1 at Foulden Burn, 1 at Hutton Bridge, and 2 at Newton Braes. Other species included Large White, Green Veined, Orange Tip, Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Red Admiral, and Comma... the first Comma I have seen in a while.
Large Red Damselflys seen at Hutton Bridge, and 2 Kingfisher screaming upstream on the Whiteadder, the first I have seen this year.

Iain.
Attachments
small copp_1.jpg
Small Copper on the railway siding in shelter.
small copp_1.jpg (97.57 KiB) Viewed 3505 times
comma_1.jpg
Comma at Hutton Bridge
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Wed 04 May 2011 16:31

Hi all,
The Duns Castle Woods and hills today produced a good number of species and good counts. Green Veined White at 40+, Orange Tip 25+, Small Copper 18 on one hillside and 1 in the woodland rides. 2 Red Admiral, 1 Painted Lady, 7 Peacock, 1 Small Tortoiseshell and 4 Small Heath newly emerged.


Iain.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby NickMorgan » Wed 04 May 2011 20:27

Is that where they all went?!! I visited several areas of East Lothian, mostly towards the eastern coast and I only saw three green-veined whites, two peacocks and a large white. I was looking for speckled woods (not that we get them here often), but I would have been happy to have seen a small copper, small heath or red admiral, none of which I have seen yet.
Last edited by NickMorgan on Thu 12 May 2011 14:06, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Sat 07 May 2011 16:56

Hi all,
This rain is much needed indeed. Not much in the way of lively butterflys though. Hunting around Chirnside today I managed to find a Wall Brown male...I saw them in late summer here...so it seems they are settling inland quite nicely. Some Orange Tip resting on Cuckoo Flower and Green Veined on White Dead Nettle. 1 Peacock just before the rain hanging upside down in the grasses. And that is about it for now...lets hope the skys clear eventually.

Iain.
Attachments
WALL_1.jpg
Wall Brown near Chirnside today.
OT_1.jpg
Orange Tip today sitting out the rain.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Wed 11 May 2011 18:50

Hi all,
As this Low pressure trundles around the north of Scotland we are getting quite a breeze it seems from a different direction everyday. The showers are few and far between...thankfully. Getting out to the coast over the past few days...ignoring the ominous cumulonimbus build up...where their are butterflies in numbers tucked away in little gulleys. At Lamberton Moor on Monday a few Small Heath and a good number of Small Copper as well as Red Admiral and a solitary Small Tortoiseshell. Further on toward Lamberton..Small White, Green Veined and Orange Tip. On the coast yet more Small Copper and a few hardy Small Heath braving the stiff breeze.Toward Burnmouth some Wall Brown and more Red Admiral and few very early Small Blue cowered down deep in the vetches. The earliest Small Blue emergence so far...although all butterflies are showing signs of early emergence....about a week early now...that gap could close as long as the weather remains like it is.
Today...more of the same. A few Large White at Burnmouth. 12 Wall, 8 Small Heath and 6 Small Copper at Breeches nr Burnmouth. Oh and a Slow worm at Upper Burnmouth...first one I have seen in twenty years....a very strange reptile indeed...is it a reptile?...I am not sure...it might as well be a Cobra as far as I am concerned...I kept well away. :D

Iain.
Attachments
wall.jpg
Wall Brown at Breeches
smblo.jpg
Small Blue male at Burnmouth
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Sat 14 May 2011 21:23

Hi all,
Another trip down to the coast today from Burnmouth too Berwick. It was very windy, and the sunshine was limited...and the temperature at times was not very May like at all. At Burnmouth a few Small Copper, Orange Tip, Green Veined White. Down the coast Small Blue 16...difficult to say just how many their could be about as the weather was not allowing them full access to the cliffs. So in sheltered nooks small groups of males were sitting tight. A mating pair were seen and 18 eggs counted on the Kidney Vetch that is in flower. Also some Small Heath, Wall Brown and Red Admiral. From the border too Berwick I saw little else due to that nagging breeze.

Iain.
Attachments
058_1.jpg
Wall Brown male struggling to hold his position in the wind.
058_1.jpg (99.58 KiB) Viewed 3427 times
043_1.jpg
A mating pair of Small Blue today
029_1.jpg
Small Blue male today testing the windspeed.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Tue 17 May 2011 19:16

Hello from Lamberton
Friday 13th Nice sunny and almost calm morning. First Wall Brown of the year in our garden, sitting sunning itself at 09.00. This is much earlier than last year.
Tuesday 17th Overcast with sunny spells, light west wind. First Large White this year in our garden along with Small White and Red Admiral.
The wind has been so strong most days that little can fly.
R McB
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby IAC » Wed 18 May 2011 19:06

Hi all,
At the coast around Burnmouth today. Surprised to find 2 Peacocks still battling on in the wind. 11 Small Copper, 14 Wall Brown...quite a few females among them. 10 Green Veined White, 2 Small White, 1 Red Admiral, 1 Large White, 21 Small Blue, 9 Small Heath.
I found a Kidney Vetch plant today with 14 Small Blue eggs attached...some of the eggs were placed properly between the buds...others seemed to be just...anywhere will do...even found a few stuffed down the sides of unopened flowerheads. Their is plenty of KV in flower...but very little KV in shelter from the gusty wind...so overloading of heads seems to be occuring in sheltered spots.
I also noted today a Small Blue sipping minerals from my boots...quite strange....until I realised that earlier in the morning I had been along the shoreline walking through some very rancid Seaweed...I believe this is what the little guy was after... :D

Iain.
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Re: Berwickshire Sightings May 2011

Postby RJDMcBeath » Wed 18 May 2011 22:10

Hello Folks,

Well done Ian, that is some collection of butterflies for such a windy day !
I had a walk in the early evening up the River Ale where it joins the Eye, best I could manage was 1 Orange Tip and 7 Green-veined White.

R McB
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