March 2017

Discussion forum for sightings.
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Matsukaze
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Re: March 2017

Postby Matsukaze » Sat Mar 11, 2017 8:35 pm

First butterfly of the year at home today - a Small Tortoiseshell doing a fly-by. Also a Slow-worm basking on top of the ornamental heather in the rockery.

Allan.W.
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Re: March 2017

Postby Allan.W. » Sat Mar 11, 2017 8:59 pm

Good butterfly day today ,in Orlestone forest (Kent) ,managed ten Comma, 3 peacocks, and a courting pair of Small Torts
these were backed up with 2 pairs of very vocal Buzzard ,a huge flock (or should I say "Charm") of Goldfinches,plus one single Siskin,and in the same pond as last spring a huge mass of Frogspawn,which is good, but has covered the small patch of Water Violet,that just manages to hang on in this pond
could be the end for the violet,we,ll have to see ! several Common lizard were making the most of the warm sun,and a male Sparrowhawk thermalling over the main ride ........ Things are moving at last !
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Testudo Man
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Re: March 2017

Postby Testudo Man » Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:11 am

David M wrote:Sounds like you had a memorable day, TM. We'll look forward to seeing the images.


Yes David, it was a good session...shame i couldnt spend more time out in the field, but i had to return to work!

Some photos then, cheers Paul.

The 1st Brimstone image was shot using my Panasonic FZ150/close up filter. All the other images were shot using my Nikon V1/FT1/Sigma 150mm Macro lens.
The 2 Comma images have been cropped, but all the other images are not cropped at all.
The worn Red Admiral was seen first, it was basking on a small road sign!
I didnt bother loading an image of the Small Tortoiseshell, it was shot from a greater distance than the others, so it was of poor quality.

9th-March-2017-to-600b.jpg


9th-March-2017-to-600a.jpg


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The 2 Adders sighted. Both images are not cropped.

9th-March-2017-to-700b.jpg


9th-March-2017-to-700c.jpg

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David M
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Re: March 2017

Postby David M » Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:57 am

Quality stuff, TM. What a range of interesting things you saw. You're also one of the few to have had the privilege of a grounded and seemingly well-behaved spring Brimstone!

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John W
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Re: March 2017

Postby John W » Sun Mar 12, 2017 12:22 pm

Saw my first butterflies of 2017 on Saturday at Park Corner Heath / Rowland Wood in East Sussex - 6 Commas and a Peacock.

mar-11-2017 - 1.jpg

mar-11-2017 - 2.jpg

Cheers
John W

MrSp0ck
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Re: March 2017

Postby MrSp0ck » Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:32 pm

A walk over Hutchinsons Bank this afternoon, 15+ Small Tortoiseshell, 9 Comma, 3 Peacocks, 5 Brimstones, so good counts, but still no Red Admirals on site.

Ruby Tiger larva

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Last edited by MrSp0ck on Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Jack Harrison
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Re: March 2017

Postby Jack Harrison » Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:04 pm

Still no butterflies here in north Scotland. But we have had a strong immigration of these (pic taken today, 13th March). Click for larger image.
Near the end of last year I photographed part of a flock and the count in the picture was 447 birds!

Jack
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David M
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Re: March 2017

Postby David M » Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:10 pm

That's decent compensation for the lack of butterflies, Jack. I'd love to see these birds.

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Jack Harrison
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Re: March 2017

Postby Jack Harrison » Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:37 pm

Couple of Crossbills later but no photos.

jJack

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Pete Eeles
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Re: March 2017

Postby Pete Eeles » Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:31 pm

David M wrote:That's decent compensation for the lack of butterflies.


I've spent the last 3 weeks absolutely rushed off my feet getting photos ... things have really kicked off ... although they're not photos of adult butterflies :) Keeping an eye on immature stages is great therapy for getting through the winter :)

Cheers,

- Pete

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David M
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Re: March 2017

Postby David M » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:10 pm

Pete Eeles wrote:I've spent the last 3 weeks absolutely rushed off my feet getting photos ... things have really kicked off ... although they're not photos of adult butterflies :) Keeping an eye on immature stages is great therapy for getting through the winter :)


Hopefully these photos are coming to a personal diary very soon? :)

Testudo Man
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Re: March 2017

Postby Testudo Man » Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:43 pm

David M wrote:Quality stuff, TM. What a range of interesting things you saw. You're also one of the few to have had the privilege of a grounded and seemingly well-behaved spring Brimstone!


Thanks very much David, yes, this area that i visit, is a great place for wildlife...and only a five minute drive from work too :wink:
I was very lucky with that Brimstone, it behaved well for me. I dont normally get that close to brimstones, for any length of time, but this butterfly just sat there for me.

Yesterday at work, as well as the usual overwintering species on the wing, i saw 2 "Whites" (probably Small Whites)...no chance of any photos though.

Today, i took one of my "extended" lunch breaks from work, an saw a great many Butterflies!!
Ive never seen so many Commas???!!! The woods seemed to be alive with Commas...I would think a possible 20+ seen. They were on the woodland floor, there were dueling in the air(up to 4 at a time) they were feeding on sap on tree branches that had been recently cut back.
Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, Brimstone also seen.....................and a real surprise fresh Holly Blue!.
The Holly Blue, just a common little blue butterfly, seen every year with ease. But when i saw this small blue butterfly fly through the woods and land on a Bramble leaf, it took me by surprise...the colour was a joy to see, a nice surprise/bonus.

I took some interesting images of all those Commas in various situations, plus i shot a couple of pics of the Holly Blue too. But i havent had a chance to go through the pics just yet! Hope to sort them out soon enough though.

4 Adders seen, 3 males and one beautiful female.
Just the 1 Common Lizard spotted too.

Location - Kent, cheers Paul.

Testudo Man
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Re: March 2017

Postby Testudo Man » Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:58 pm

Sorted through several images from yesterday.

This Comma was joined by a couple of Wood ants...both insects where after the same source...sap from the freshly cut trees/branches.
Image is cropped.
16th-March-2017-to-600a.jpg


Another Comma feeding on the sap.
Image is not cropped.
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Another Comma on a tree, this one was just about to open its wings.
Image is cropped.
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The fresh Holly Blue.
Image is not cropped.
16th-March-2017-to-700a.jpg



A pair of male Adders, sharing the same basking spot.
Images is not cropped.
16th-March-2017-to-700b.jpg

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David M
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Re: March 2017

Postby David M » Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:21 pm

Wow. An early Holly Blue.

You must have found a warm spot to see this species so early, TM?

Philzoid
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Re: March 2017

Postby Philzoid » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:33 pm

After a February, Red admiral sighting at London WWT and reading about Wurzel’s butterfly extravaganza at 5 rivers I was hoping things would kick on. Unfortunately, not the case. Weekend weather generally came out worse on the forecasts, my own Comma Corner normally reliable at this time of year :( …. wasn’t, nor did I see an expected Peacock or Brimstone while at Thursley nature reserve (although I was treated to the sight of a Buzzard being mobbed by carrion crows) :D
2017.03.11 IMG_5895 Carrion Crows mobbing Common Buzzard, NNR m 2t.jpg

So last Sunday I decided to dampen my impatience for butterflies by doing some birding at London WWT. And as luck would have it while in a bird hide I got my second butterfly of the season as one of the wardens decided to release a Small Tortoiseshell she’d found :o . I snapped off a couple of pictures and then it was off. London’s Wetland centre is the place to go if you want to see butterflies it seems :wink: . My only regret was forgetting to find out whether she’d had picked it up from its roost (not recommended) or whether it had been flapping at the window (and therefore OK to release)
IMG_2281 Small Tortoiseshell WWF bird hide, London WWT.jpg


Phil

Allan.W.
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Re: March 2017

Postby Allan.W. » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:46 pm

Reported today at Sandwich bay Bird obs;(Kent) 2 Male Orange -tips,on a very bright ,sunny but cold day, beating the previous early date of 30th March.
Regards Allan.W.

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bugboy
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Re: March 2017

Postby bugboy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:03 pm

1 (maybe 2) Small Whites seen on Walthamstow Marshes today. details and piccies in my PD when I get a chance.
Some addictions are good for the soul!

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Vince Massimo
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Re: March 2017

Postby Vince Massimo » Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:44 pm

A walk around my local butterfly hot-spots in Crawley yesterday afternoon (21st March) produced my first Small White of the year. It was a female with quite a dusky appearance.

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Crawley, Sussex 21-March-2017

Also notable was the sight of a Small Tortoiseshell briefly courting a female Red Admiral.

IMG_9479-01G.jpg
Crawley, Sussex 21st-March-2017

Several Commas were also active in the sunny conditions which reached 12C, despite a cool wind.

Vince

millerd
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Re: March 2017

Postby millerd » Sat Mar 25, 2017 12:15 pm

Holly Blue first thing this morning on my local patch near Heathrow...
HB1 250317.JPG
My earliest ever.

Dave

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Catteraxe
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Re: March 2017

Postby Catteraxe » Sat Mar 25, 2017 1:17 pm

Glorious day at Margam Park (Port Talbot) yesterday (24/3) spring has truly sprung! 2 Brimstone, 4 Comma and 3 Peacock plus Buzzards, Green Woodpeckers, Siskin, Chiffchaff, Meadow Pippits and a male Skylark singing its heart out above the downs. Add in a herd of 100+ Fallow deer - it doesn't get much better than that!

Kevin.


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