millerd

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millerd
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Re: millerd

Postby millerd » Fri Nov 17, 2017 12:02 pm

Thanks, Andrew - I have no idea why the Holly Blues keep popping up. No incantations, potions or wands involved! :)

Yes, Buggy - it amazed even me, and I'm used to seeing them. Not in the second half of November though... :o :)

Thank you, Goldie - you would certainly think that it was a different time of year. :)

Friday 17th November: my 2017 season started exactly nine months ago, on 17th February: it still hasn't finished...

There was quite a heavy frost this morning and the car needed a fair amount of scraping. The sun soon got to work and there was no wind, so despite low air temperatures (in single figures certainly), I had a look around the nearer part of my local patch before heading away for the weekend. I didn't see the Holly Blue again, but quickly counted four Red Admirals - here are a couple of them (the last one is the one I photographed yesterday).
RA3 171117.JPG
RA2 171117.JPG
RA1 171117.JPG


Dave

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Wurzel
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Re: millerd

Postby Wurzel » Fri Nov 17, 2017 12:59 pm

I think you're getting a bit too good at this Holly Blue whispering Dave - a pristine specimen in mid November :shock: :shock: :mrgreen: You're not just getting them to open their wings but now you're getting them to leave their Chrysalis :shock: :wink:

Have a goodun

Wurzel

trevor
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Re: millerd

Postby trevor » Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:43 pm

HI Dave,
With such a pristine, very late female Holly Blue, I am sure you will be showered with mrgreens :mrgreen: :mrgreen: .
But I think we have a contest on our hands, for the most unusual end of season species.
Is it your Holly Blue or my Meadow Brown ?.
That last image is stunning.

It's been a great season with lots of surprises !
Trevor.
Last edited by trevor on Fri Nov 17, 2017 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Neil Freeman
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Re: millerd

Postby Neil Freeman » Fri Nov 17, 2017 8:17 pm

bugboy wrote:Your next mission should you choose to accept it is to photograph one on some frost encrusted Holly berries on Christmas Day Dave :D


Now there's a challenge :lol:

It does make you wonder though, what else is out there. I have seen a number of recent reports of various moth species coming to traps well outside of their normal flight times. I had a Shoulder-striped Wainscot in my trap a couple of weeks ago, this being a species that normally flies from late May to Late July.
It has certainly been a strange season.

Cheers,

Neil.

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David M
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Re: millerd

Postby David M » Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:08 pm

bugboy wrote:

Your next mission should you choose to accept it is to photograph one on some frost encrusted Holly berries on Christmas Day Dave :D


I've made some joking remarks about Dave's ability to conjure up late season Holly Blues from the ether lately, but given this latest sighting I can't be 100% sure that he won't pull off the very image you suggest, Bugboy. :o :shock:

millerd
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Re: millerd

Postby millerd » Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:14 pm

I am mystified, Wurzel, as to why a Holly Blue chrysalis that has suffered several very chilly nights has not gone into blissful winter sleep, and instead hatches out on a mid-November day. I hope there are one or two left for next spring! :)

To be honest, Trevor, both seem baffling to me: how could a spring Meadow Brown caterpillar not emerge as a butterfly until November? And as for the Holly Blue, see my comment above. I wonder what the experts make of all this? :? :)

That's quite a challenge, Neil and David (and thank you once again Bugboy :wink: :) ). However, unless the whole spring brood go completely awry and emerge one by one every week until the end of the year, I don't think I'll succeed! :)

I was down in Somerset over the weekend for a school reunion, and saw no butterflies during the trip. However, I was shown a piece of mobile phone video footage of a stretch of ivy-festooned wall in Wellington which was entertaining over 50 Red Admirals (taken in October). Goodness knows how many there must have been in the UK this year.

I returned home around lunchtime on Sunday 19th November. The sun was out (which it hadn't been for most of the drive), the temperature was 9 degrees at best, and over on the nearest part of my local patch a Red Admiral was flying.
RA2 191117.JPG
RA1 191117.JPG

Good to be home!

Dave

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Goldie M
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Re: millerd

Postby Goldie M » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:59 am

Hi! Dave it's a treat to keep seeing Butterflies in your posts :D It's certainly making the year stretch out :D I hope you see some more. Goldie :D

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Andrew555
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Re: millerd

Postby Andrew555 » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:05 am

Nice RA Dave. :) What's the record for your latest sighting of the year ?

millerd
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Re: millerd

Postby millerd » Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:45 pm

Thanks, both! It's good to still be seeing things. Eight days out of twenty this month so far, and ten months out of twelve in the year. :)

I think that nationally Red Admirals have been seen on every day of the year - but I would check that to be certain. It doesn't seem unlikely to be honest.

My latest ever around here to date, Andrew, was 30th November 2014 when on an unusually sunny and warm day I saw six Red Admirals and three Commas. I had also seen a Red Admiral and a Peacock the previous day down in Hampshire just before the winter social got underway. A little way to go yet to break that record, but you never know. :)

My last Holly Blue of 2014 was 9th November, so that particular record has now tumbled...

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Re: millerd

Postby Wurzel » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:21 pm

And still the Red Admirals come! :D I reckon you'll be able to muster one up this weekend on the way to the Social Dave :D

Have a goodun

Wurzel

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bugboy
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Re: millerd

Postby bugboy » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:59 pm

Wurzel wrote:And still the Red Admirals come! :D I reckon you'll be able to muster one up this weekend on the way to the Social Dave :D

Have a goodun

Wurzel


You might be right there, the forecast (for what it's worth) is for a lovely sunny day. Keep your camera handy just in case :)
Some addictions are good for the soul!

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David M
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Re: millerd

Postby David M » Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:39 pm

Interesting to see the Red Admiral was pottering around nettles. I wonder whether it was looking to lay?

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Andrew555
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Re: millerd

Postby Andrew555 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:36 pm

millerd wrote:Thanks, both! It's good to still be seeing things. Eight days out of twenty this month so far, and ten months out of twelve in the year. :)

I think that nationally Red Admirals have been seen on every day of the year - but I would check that to be certain. It doesn't seem unlikely to be honest.

My latest ever around here to date, Andrew, was 30th November 2014 when on an unusually sunny and warm day I saw six Red Admirals and three Commas. I had also seen a Red Admiral and a Peacock the previous day down in Hampshire just before the winter social got underway. A little way to go yet to break that record, but you never know. :)

My last Holly Blue of 2014 was 9th November, so that particular record has now tumbled...

Dave


Thanks Dave, interesting. I will be in Weymouth at Christmas, I will have a scout around there and Portland, you never know! :)

millerd
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Re: millerd

Postby millerd » Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:54 pm

Thanks to you all for the comments. :) Unfortunately that was the last sighting of anything around here. The sunny days recently have been too windy, or just plain cold. I've checked the various nettle beds, but have not been able to re-find the Red Admiral eggs I spotted earlier in the month, nor any signs of larval activity. On the other hand, the nettles have not yet succumbed to any of the frosts either. I shall continue to keep an eye out.

All I have to report is this curious moth, found inside a few days back.
moth 231117.JPG


Dave

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Wurzel
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Re: millerd

Postby Wurzel » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:19 am

I'm not surprised the the Heathrow micro bubble has succumbed to the chill - it's bloomy nippy all over :? Your moth is a Plume moth, probably a Brown Plume, but I think 'stick' moths would have been a better group name for them :wink:
Good catching up at the Social - if you fancy trying Daneways for Large Blue next year PM me and we might be able to sort a group trip - it'll have to be a weekend though as I'm sill a wage slave :roll:

Have a goodun

Wurzel


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