Additional Pages

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Butterfly Firsts On The Patch Return..and a not so 'common' Grasshopper

Having taken a small vacation, I was keen to get back out in the field. I decided to stay close to home today and cover the east and west sides of my patch. So in the morning I spent a couple of hours wandering the set aside on the East side. Initially it was all a bit lifeless, despite being a humid 19°c. My first discovery was flushing a Yellow Shell Moth. This was a Patch first and it shot onto the underside of a branch, forcing me to wade through the nettles to ID  it and cobble some sort of record shot.
Yellow Shell Moth

There was no shortage of  Micro moth activity, but they were all fairly non descript and flighty, until I spied upon one  I had seen a few days before, a distinctive brown moth with 2 yellow spots, Pammene aurana. Unfortunately I only saw it long enough to ID it. As it brightened, a Speckled Wood danced around, I find this species often show in less than perfect weather. I detoured slightly off the path to walk through the long grass and suddenly noticed a lot of Butterfly activity. Surveying with my bins I saw 3 distinct species, and was fairly certain they were all new to the year, and 2 were new to my patch.
Firstly I homed in on a  Large Skipper, of which there were 3.

Large Skipper (male)
Then one of the second newbies eventually settled to confirm what I suspected, Ringlets, a good dozen

Finally, after being lead a merry dance, I managed to confirm and get a snap of my first Meadow Brown of the year.
Meadow Brown (male)
This was turning into an excellent session ! On the birding front, Kestrel, Raven, Yellowhammer and Chiffchaff stood out.
After a bit of lunch I returned to walk the West side. Here there were better numbers of large Skipper, and handfull of Ringlets. The heath area obviously had good numbers of Grasshopper's as they chirped away. I photographed this Common Green Grasshopper. I have since learn't from JK these are not common place in VC37 and will submitting my sighting to the Worcestershire Biological Records Centre

Common Green Grasshopper

 The other significant finding was the presence of Banded Demoiselles, which I had not previously seen there although in much smaller numbers than the Beautiful Demoiselles.

Banded Demoiselle (male)

Finally a pleasing return to the patch was rounded off with a nice Spotted Long Horn Beetle ( it has other names, but I like that one )

Spotted Longhorn Beetle  (rutpela maculata)


  1. What a great selection of inverts just highlights the merits of monitoring a local patch!

  2. Absolutely,I look forward to building the portfolio !