Jamie Burston

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Pauline
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Pauline » Tue May 09, 2017 5:16 am

Morning Jamie

I agree with David - fantastic piece of work on the WLH - unique and original, based primarily on personal observation. I shall certainly be returning to it again and again. For convenience in accessing it, it would be great to see it with other reports on this site (if it's not already there). Well done Jamie - I look forward to seeing the concluding part.

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Pete Eeles
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Pete Eeles » Tue May 09, 2017 5:32 pm

Pauline wrote:Morning Jamie

I agree with David - fantastic piece of work on the WLH - unique and original, based primarily on personal observation. I shall certainly be returning to it again and again. For convenience in accessing it, it would be great to see it with other reports on this site (if it's not already there). Well done Jamie - I look forward to seeing the concluding part.


I agree, Pauline :)

Our vehicle for publishing such works is "Dispar", and Jamie has promised me an article :)

Cheers,

- Pete

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:35 pm

Female White-letter Hairstreaks, clearly have a strong preference of laying their eggs at the base of leaf buds, at the tips of branches. Based on photographic documentation by many individuals. On Huntingdon elm, there is a more general preference to lay their eggs on the "scar band", though I have recorded 4 or 5 other egg laying locations that they will use aswell, on this particular variety of elm, however I haven't seen them laying on the leaf buds, like on Wych elm. I'm finding that there is probably more variation in the White-letter Hairstreaks life-cycle/ behaviour / appearance, primarily in the immature stages, than any other UK butterfly species.

Pete, thank you for: "One observation on that front is that trees that don't push out flowers come into leaf much earlier (and I'm talking 2 or 3 weeks earlier) than their counterparts that do (and will send relevant information to Jamie Burston in Sussex BC next year on this phenomenon as part of his studies). I think this is significant. If it weren't for the non-flowering elms, then I wouldn't have found the leaves the larvae needed but, more importantly, I think this might have implications for the conservation of this species."

I look forward to receiving your findings! Indeed I have also noted that non-flowering (immature) elms come into leaf before mature elm trees do. I'm following up such a case this spring, as a non-flowering elm tree did seem to support White-letter Hairstreaks, luckily not hard to follow-up on as the trees are around a 12 minute walk from my house.

Below a photo that I took of 1 of 3 White-letter Hairsteak eggs/ovum found back on 10/01/17, laid at a height of 4' on Huntingdon elm:
IMG_6932 -.JPG

If your confident in identifying elm at this time of year and would like to find your first White-letter Hairstreak eggs, I give my advice and tips, here: https://www.sussex-butterflies.org.uk/species/white-letter-hairstreak.php

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David M
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby David M » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:22 pm

Fascinating information again, Jamie. I only wish I could find colonies near me to study! It's a job finding elms on the Gower, let alone WLHs. :(

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:20 pm

David M wrote:Fascinating information again, Jamie. I only wish I could find colonies near me to study! It's a job finding elms on the Gower, let alone WLHs. :(


Thank you, David! I've got two Elm contacts, I'll ask them when I have more time if they are aware of any elms in your area. Fingers-crossed!

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:29 pm

Direct copy of what I've posted onto the Butterfly Conservation - Sussex Branch, Sightings Page:

Following my guided walk "Keep the Ridge Green" last summer, at Green Ridge in Brighton & Hove, I was convinced that the Blackthorn hedgerow should host Brown Hairstreaks. The location almost halfway between two known Brown Hairstreak sites, one in Patcham and the other Benfield Valley in Hove. The problem was that Brown Hairstreak had not been recorded on Green Ridge. As a result I collaborated with members of the volunteer group 'Keep the Ridge Green' who manage the site and Neil Doyle, Brighton and Hove City Council, Cityparks Ranger and his group of volunteers to arrange a conservation work party. To find out more about Green Ridge, visit: http://www.keeptheridgegreen.com

Yesterday 19th January, we all meet to carry out the work to manage the Blackthorn hedgerow, in our first year of the management cycle, we cut down a portion of it's length to encourage new re-growth, of which female Brown Hairstreaks have a preference to lay their eggs on.

P2330497 - Copy.JPG

Before the work started as I was walking along Green Ridge towards the meeting point, I happened to pay more attention to the second Blackthorn plant I looked at, I lent in, and lo and behold, I was looking at a Brown Hairstreak egg! I broke the news to the group that the butterfly we were trying to attract, was indeed already present, this provided the ideal opportunity to show them the egg. During our time on site I managed to locate a second egg. We left a plentiful amount of Blackthorn untouched, in the hope of minimising the overall loss of any eggs. Brighton has gained another Brown Hairstreak site, 2018 just got even more exciting! Thank you to everyone who attended, your time and support is greatly appreciated!

Brown Hairstreak 1.JPG
1st Brown Hairstreak egg

Brown Hairstreak 2.JPG
2nd Brown Hairstreak egg

It's my belief that Brown Hairstreak is far more widespread around Brighton and Hove, probably occurring in small discrete colonies like that found at Patcham, where smaller hedgerows can be found. Based on the discovery at Green Ridge, this strongly suggests that they are in nearby Waterhall.

On 18th January I went to Wild Park, Brighton, where I located two Purple Hairstreak eggs on a master Oak tree. One of the eggs does appear to have been from last year, having likely hatched last spring. Sadly no photos this time.

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bugboy
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby bugboy » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:41 pm

Hi Jamie, I've recently found a WLH egg on a patch of Elm suckers at work in central London. The horticultural dept are keen to promote and encourage native wildlife to the site (my end of year in-house report covering the transects I do being the highlight of their team leaders year :D ) and I was hoping to pick your brains about what DED resistant strains of Elm they could use around the site that the Hairstreaks will use.

Thanks in advance, Paul :)
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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:59 pm

bugboy wrote:Hi Jamie, I've recently found a WLH egg on a patch of Elm suckers at work in central London. The horticultural dept are keen to promote and encourage native wildlife to the site (my end of year in-house report covering the transects I do being the highlight of their team leaders year :D ) and I was hoping to pick your brains about what DED resistant strains of Elm they could use around the site that the Hairstreaks will use.
Thanks in advance, Paul :)


Hi Paul, Happy to help. I need more information on the location to suggest the best DED-resistant cultivars, I'll send you a PM to discuss it further.
All the best, Jamie :)

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David M
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby David M » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:53 am

Jamie Burston wrote:I've got two Elm contacts, I'll ask them when I have more time if they are aware of any elms in your area. Fingers-crossed!


Many thanks for the offer, Jamie! I only know of one extensive patch of elms in nearby Loughor and there is indeed a WLH colony there. I'm sure there must be others in the vicinity.

Well done finding the Brown Hairstreak ova by the way. Let's hope the adults turn up later in the year.

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peterc
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby peterc » Mon Jan 22, 2018 7:03 am

bugboy wrote:Hi Jamie, I've recently found a WLH egg on a patch of Elm suckers at work in central London. The horticultural dept are keen to promote and encourage native wildlife to the site (my end of year in-house report covering the transects I do being the highlight of their team leaders year :D ) and I was hoping to pick your brains about what DED resistant strains of Elm they could use around the site that the Hairstreaks will use.

Thanks in advance, Paul :)


Hi Paul,

Liz Goodyear from the Herts and Middx branch would be interested to hear of the plans to encourage colonisation of WlHs in central London. I will send you a PM.

ATB

Peter

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:15 pm

David M wrote:Many thanks for the offer, Jamie! I only know of one extensive patch of elms in nearby Loughor and there is indeed a WLH colony there. I'm sure there must be others in the vicinity.

Well done finding the Brown Hairstreak ova by the way. Let's hope the adults turn up later in the year.


More than happy to investigate for you. Great to hear that White-letter Hairstreaks occur in Loughor! The butterfly is very mobile when they want to be, I would imagine especially so for females wanting to establish new colonies, if healthy elms are in the surrounding area, they should be present.

Thank you very much, David! It's not bad when you find 2 of only 3 known sites in Brighton and Hove for the Brown Hairstreak! More searching to be done. :) Yes, I can't wait for the chance to look for the adults around August time.

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David M
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby David M » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:53 pm

Jamie Burston wrote:More than happy to investigate for you. Great to hear that White-letter Hairstreaks occur in Loughor! The butterfly is very mobile when they want to be, I would imagine especially so for females wanting to establish new colonies, if healthy elms are in the surrounding area, they should be present.


Thanks, Jamie. Any helpful information would be gratefully received.

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:03 pm

Copied from my post on Butterfly Conservation - Sussex Branches, Sightings page:

Back on Saturday 27th January, I surveyed Roedale Valley Allotments in Hollingbury, Brighton, to address where five disease-resistant elm trees could be planted, then yesterday, Sunday 28th, I visited Lower Roedale Allotments in Hollingdean, Brighton for the same reason. This time for three disease-resistant elms. After leaving Lower Roedale Allotments, on the spur of the moment, I searched nearby at the edge of Hollingdean, on the southern boundary of Wild Park LNR, looking at the Blackthorn/Prunus species I had noted in previous years. Bearing in mind what I previously posted "It's my belief that Brown Hairstreak is far more widespread around Brighton and Hove, probably occurring in small discrete colonies like that found at Patcham, where smaller hedgerows can be found."

My search in this area produced a single sighting of a Brown Hairstreak egg, a first I believe for the Hollingdean area of Brighton!

P2330509 - Copy.JPG

After, I headed north to the dew pond of Wild Park, where I visited the master oak tree to check on the Purple Hairstreak eggs I had previously found. I then continued north heading towards the edge of Ditchling Road, right on the northern boundary of Wild Park LNR by Hollingbury. Here I also searched the Blackthorn, having taken note of the location four years ago, each year failing to spot the adult Brown Hairstreaks, during their flight period, and last year looking for their eggs. My perseverance paid off, I was finally rewarded soon after my arrival, I lifted a downwards facing Blackthorn branch to find two Brown Hairstreak eggs laid at the base of neighbouring forks.

P2330512 - Copy.JPG

Searching the same plant I also found a third egg.

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Walking a little further on, there was a tangle of Blackthorn that had been torn out of the ground by a tractor, to my amazement I found my last and very lucky egg, on the first Blackthorn plant that had gone unscathed by the edge of the tractors activities.

P2330518 - Copy.JPG

Nearby I joined Friends of Woodbourne Meadow volunteer group back on 24th January, where I coppiced a small section of Prunus, the site now looks to be within reaching distance for the butterfly, to deposit eggs on the new re-growth later this year. Walking home after only intending to visit the allotment, having turned into a five hour walk, I went to check on my White-letter Hairstreak eggs, noting that the development of the elm flowers, look even more advanced than last year, if it stays mild I could see the White-letter Hairstreak caterpillars emerge in around three weeks time! I certainly enjoyed my early Easter egg hunt, though it's done nothing for my hand modelling career!

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Jamie Burston
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Re: Jamie Burston

Postby Jamie Burston » Wed Jan 31, 2018 4:41 pm

Copied from my post on Butterfly Conservation - Sussex Branches, Sightings page:

Playing catch-up. Back on the 7th January I joined around 25 members of Friends of Hollingbury and Burstead Woods, volunteer group and Brighton and Hove City Council, Cityparks Ranger, Will Furze. I joined the group to continue the work of previous years, to manage the scalloped bays at the edge of the wood, near the playground of Hollingbury Park in Brighton. We cut the vegetation down to the ground to give the developing Creeping Thistle (the White-letter Hairstreaks primary nectar source for the site), the best opportunity to thrive, un-managed, the plant is out competed by Cleavers, hindering their growth. We will return in April/May to complete the management for the year, cutting down any vigorous growth that surrounds the Thistles as their growth starts to take off. The management of the bays, for the Creeping Thistle, was perfected last year, the result of the work having multiplied the amount of flowering Thistle, as pictured, providing more nectar for the White-letter Hairstreaks and a range of insects.

Clearing Bays - Copy.JPG
'Friends of Hollingbury and Burstead Woods', working on scalloped bays.

Clearing Bays (2) - Copy.JPG
'Friends of Hollingbury and Burstead Woods', working on scalloped bays.

IMG_5116 - Copy - Copy.JPG
Flourishing Creeping Thistle, Summer 2017 result.

Once we cleared the bays, we headed to the very top of Hollingbury Park, by the recycling point. Friends of Hollingbury and Burstead Woods, volunteer group purchased two 'Ademuz', a disease-resistant Spanish Field elm cultivar, having purchased them alongside our Branch order. I approached the group, as part of my role as White-letter Hairstreak Species Champion, with the suggestion of planting disease-resistant elms back in 2017, the group well ahead of me, having already planned to fill a newly opened space with elm, it all came together perfectly! These will prove a great addition to the park, with Dutch elm disease frequently sighted in the woods within the past few years, they will serve as a future back-up for the butterfly. I also believe that these two 'Ademuz' are the first of their kind to be planted within Brighton and Hove, directly adding to the National Elm Collection. Ranger, Will, is pictured with me at the moment of planting the two elms, thanks to Gill Taylor for the photos. My thanks again go to all the volunteers of Friends of Hollingbury and Burstead Woods and Will, Citypark Ranger, for supporting such habitat conservation.

IMG_1163 USE.JPG
Planting first Ulmus minor 'Ademuz' whip, disease-resistant Spanish Field elm.

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Planting second Ulmus minor 'Ademuz' whip, disease-resistant Spanish Field elm.


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