Pauline

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Pauline
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Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:23 pm

Thanks Paul. I was really excited to witness that but as you might imagine I couldn't move anything - not that bit of grass, not the camera, in fact I hardly dared breathe! I am pleased with some of those shots - but a few could have been better.

Thank you so much David. It would be interesting to know from those that do annual egg counts what is the maximum number in a group that they have encountered - but of course, without witnessing the ovi-posting there is no guarantee it was the same female. Still be interesting to know tho'.

I appreciate that compliment Kev - thank you. It is the first time I have had any success recording egg-laying - at least with BH. I think the last time might have been with the Map in Dorset a few years ago - that really was incredible :D

Cheers Wurzel. I've got everything crossed that you've found all you wanted today - I guess you'll let us know round about Xmas time :wink: :lol:

Thank you Goldie - I certainly did. At least you now know a mating pair of BH was seen at GB which has to bode well for the future :D


Just like last year the huge number of insect bites that have been inflicted on me this season have become infected which warranted a trip to the GP yesterday for more penicillin :roll: :( . It was an early appointment but nevertheless I managed to squeeze in an early local walk first - an outing which was interesting because of what I did not see! I have not been here for 10 months and I have never been here at this time of year. It was glorious. The heather looked fantastic as far as the eye could see, dotted here and there with Gatekeepers soaking up the early warmth. Not another sole was present. The only sound was the bird song and the wonderful scent of all the wild honeysuckle hung heavy on the air. I thought of Buzzard and a few others who post some great scenery/landscape shots. I am not much good at them but it was so lovely I just had to give it another try:

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A young, very thin fox was right out in the open sniffing around but by the time I had eased this squeaky lens from the camera he was gone. What was also gone was all the Small Coppers that had been so successful in their 3rd brood last Autumn :( I am not sure why that should be - reading other diaries they seem to appear with some regularity season after season. There was no sign of immature stages that I could see. It is not a huge area but it is carpeted with Sorrel - I am not sure what type it is but it doesn't grow much more than this:

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The small colony of Brown Argus was still around although most individuals looked quite worn:

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It was time to make my way back. I noticed that there were several different types of fungus under the trees but only had time to snap this one - a sure sign of Autumn activity:

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Back home I was pleased to see:

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and concealed under one of the shrubs, a very well-disguised brimstone:

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Art Frames
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Re: Pauline

Postby Art Frames » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:46 pm

Pauline, I know I'm late (as always) but your Brown Hairstreak story and set of action pictures is marvellous. I am envious of everyone's BH pictures this year. But yours are my favourites. Cracking set.
Peter - Art Frames
A few photos on Flickr

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Neil Freeman
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Re: Pauline

Postby Neil Freeman » Tue Aug 15, 2017 6:43 pm

Hi Pauline,

Just caught up with your Brown Hairstreak egg laying sequence myself too...great images and such a privilege to catch her in action like that :D

All the best,

Neil.

essexbuzzard
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Re: Pauline

Postby essexbuzzard » Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:43 pm

Super Brown Hairstreak sequence, Pauline. I'm almost resigned to not seeing any again this year, though there may still be time for me :?

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Wurzel
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Re: Pauline

Postby Wurzel » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:15 am

Lovely landscape shots Pauline and a cracking painted Lady, with blue markings in the black circles :D :mrgreen: Still no Cloudy - maybe next week in Devon :?

Have a goodun

Wurzel

PhilBWright
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Re: Pauline

Postby PhilBWright » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:04 am

Hi Pauline,
Hope you are feeling better.
Generally, I recommend consulting a doctor about Antihistamines taken in tablet form before one comes into contact with a substance one might be allergic to if one is working in such environments where there are many biting and stinging insects.
Or (as most people know), they can reduce the severity of symptoms if taken afterwards.
Concentration
"It's when I almost have that perfect shot and a biting insect lands on my hand as I try and steady the camera"
or:
"after standing in the hot sun sweating, my arm itches when i think i need to stand still"

"For some who might not know, and are going out towards that well used picnic table, wasp nests towards the end of the summer are generally larger before service to their queen is done"

Kind Regards,

Philip

Pauline
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Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:49 pm
Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:03 pm

Peter, Neil, Mark - thank you all so much for your very generous comments on the BH images. I appreciate you taking the time to look and comment regardless of whether it is complimentary - you must know by now that I also welcome constructive criticism. I shall try to follow the fortunes of those eggs and report back in due course.

It is a pity you didn't see a CY Wurzel but there is still plenty of time - and I am dying to know what else you saw there tho:D

Wurzel wrote:Lovely landscape shots Pauline
- thank you for that Wurzel; I shall keep trying with the landscape images.

That's sensible advice Phil and next season I shall try to remember to follow it :)

It's been a long time - too long - since I laughed 'til I cried but that's exactly what happened when looking for WA larva this afternoon with Andy. It wouldn't sound at all funny if I tried to explain but in brief we strayed far from the path in our search for Honeysuckle and found ourselves surrounded by dense, almost impenetrable brambles, blackthorn, Hawthorn etc. A passing dog walker, hearing us crashing about in the undergrowth in an endeavour to 'escape' kindly began shouting helpful directions back to one of the main tracks .... and I'm afraid that's all it took :lol: :lol: The upshot was, we both spent a couple of hours scrutinising what little Honeysuckle there was - there wasn't much and much of what was there looked in a pretty poor state, perhaps diseased? Only one larva was eventually spotted but in an area with little natural light:

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David M
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Re: Pauline

Postby David M » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:42 pm

You sure do suffer for your art sometimes, Pauline! :)

Thank heavens there was one larva in there to compensate for the effort involved.

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Goldie M
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Re: Pauline

Postby Goldie M » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:08 pm

Well done Pauline you got your larva after a struggle :lol:
I hope !!
When I lived in the West Indies Pauline we got loads of Bites and we found Vinegar was the best remedy, we still dab it on after visits to GB etc, try it, it's the cheapest and best way , the acid in it takes the sting out. Goldie :D

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Re: Pauline

Postby millerd » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:58 pm

I too have just caught up with the Brown Hairstreak egg-laying shots. Completely amazing - they are obviously happy to lay in multiples if the site is right. Making the most of the sunshine I imagine! :)
I'm not sure what the insect world has against you - sending battalions of biting things out when all you ever do is your best to help them. I hope you are recovering! :)

Dave

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Wurzel
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Re: Pauline

Postby Wurzel » Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:08 am

Laughing until you cry and a White Admiral cat - two very good reasons to call that trip out a success :D

Have a goodun

Wurzel

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bugboy
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Re: Pauline

Postby bugboy » Thu Aug 17, 2017 11:31 am

Oh the things we do :lol: I can sympathise, I've ended up in similar situations although without help from friendly strangers! Looks like you found a third instar there too, keep an eye out for second brood WA in that wood :)
Some addictions are good for the soul!

Pauline
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Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Fri Aug 18, 2017 7:26 pm

I'm a little concerned about the state of the Honeysuckle David and how difficult it was to find any larva (just like last year when after 3 or 4 visits I couldn't locate any). Numbers of WA have definitely been down the last few years at the Straits :(

Thanks Goldie - I've tried just about everything else so I'll definitely give the vinegar a shot - even if I end up smelling like a fish shop :lol:

That's really kind of you Dave. On a more serious note I am getting quite weary of all these insect bites - I have just taken another 4 ticks off me :twisted:

Definitely a success Wurzel :D :D

I know you've been in similar situations Buggy so I hope your sympathy will extend to today when I was caught up on OWH in thunder, lightening, torrential rain and hail so big and fast it hurt! I was at the bottom of the hill with no cover when the wind suddenly increased, it got really cold and the sky went black:

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It happened quite quickly. In fact the butterflies noticed before I did, diving for cover and hiding away. I looked up to see this:

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I started to make my way up the hill but it was a waste of time - I was soaked to the skin long before I got there. After 20 mins the sun was back out so I made my way down again. Earlier I had found an Adonis which looked like it had been stood on before it had time to properly inflate it's wings. It had still been alive when I laid a flower beside it but on my return it was well and truly dead. How sad :(

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There were also 3 SSS at the bottom of the hill - 2 males and 1 female:

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Whilst looking for Adonis I noticed 3 Clouded Yellow flying around again and got a really poor shot of the biggest Hummingbird-hawk moth I have ever seen. I also noticed some Autumn Lady's tresses which I haven't spotted before:

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At last I found a few Adonis but with such variable weather conditions they were reluctant to open their wings:

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The sky darkened again and as the rain started for a second time I decided it was time to call it a day. It had been a struggle from start to end. On the way there I had to turn back and make a large detour as a tree had come down across the road and police were turning traffic away. On the way back a kind motorist stopped to warn me that another tree was down on a different route back!!! I should have stayed in and continued painting the walls :lol:

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David M
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Re: Pauline

Postby David M » Fri Aug 18, 2017 9:27 pm

Sounds like a pretty stormy day for you, Pauline. You're doing it tough at the moment, but if the weather forecast is to be believed, things should perk up a bit next week (not before time).

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Wurzel
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Re: Pauline

Postby Wurzel » Sat Aug 19, 2017 9:24 am

Having spent most of the summer painting walls, ceilings and skirting boards :( I can attest to the fact that getting struck by lightning or having your flesh rendered from the bone by hail is preferable to painting given even the slimmest of chances of finding a butterfly :shock: You did pretty well considering the weather :D

Have a goodun

Wurzel

Pauline
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Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:49 pm
Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Sun Aug 20, 2017 11:57 am

Let us hope so David - it has been a pretty dismal August here so far.

Mmmmmmm...... not sure about that Wurzel :lol: On balance I think I'd have been better off sticking with the painting when I look at the quality of the shots :lol:

I swear there is no-one (that I know of) buried under the patio so I was a little alarmed to find out that several of the beetles I found in the moth trap are attracted to corpses and can allegedly smell them up to a mile away :shock: :shock: Not for me those cute little Canary-shouldered Thorn moths :mrgreen: Oh no, I had to get 'burying beetles' which I must say are quite distinctive in their appearance. One of them had dozens of little mites crawling all over it:

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I did get a Thorn which I believe is a September Thorn but overall the 'haul' was somewhat disappointing - a large number of moths but very few species including Flame Shouldered, Black Arches, Setaceous Hebrew Character and what I THINK is a Lesser Swallow Prominent (I'm going to be a tiny bit embarrassed if I have that wrong again!!!):

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Pauline
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Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:49 pm
Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Mon Aug 21, 2017 6:48 pm

I was pleased to see a Hummingbird Hawk moth in the garden yesterday. I didn't have time to get outside - just grabbed the camera and took a few record shots through glass:

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Pauline
Posts: 1964
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:49 pm
Location: Liphook, Hants

Re: Pauline

Postby Pauline » Mon Aug 21, 2017 7:13 pm

Today, in between showers, I decided to check on all those Small Copper eggs I saw being laid on 6 August. I must have watched at least a dozen eggs being laid in total but sadly could only find 2 larva:

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I am not sure whether that is a discarded skin or a half eaten larva beside the Small Copper

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It was clear a couple of the eggs had not hatched but I assume the remainder had been predated.

trevor
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Re: Pauline

Postby trevor » Mon Aug 21, 2017 8:38 pm

Love the shots of that Humming Bird Hawk Moth nectaring on Phlox.
It would seem that quite a few of us on here have had a soaking recently, so you're in good company. :lol:

All the best,
Trevor.

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David M
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Re: Pauline

Postby David M » Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:06 pm

Casualties will be high at this vulnerable stage of the caterpillars' lives, Pauline. I'm sure some will go on to complete their cycle....otherwise we would never see adult Small Coppers!

Well done with the Humming Bird Hawk Moth by the way. I hope tomorrow's southerly winds might tempt a few more to cross the Channel.


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