Week six of my butterfly transect, the weather was perfect. No clouds and 100% sun, virtually no wind, just a slight breath of air from the southwest and a temperature of 18C in the shade.
I began the survey on the first sector with three Green-veined Whites followed by two more and a Speckled Wood and my one and only Orange Tip on the second sector.
I began thinking that I might have sightings on all ten sectors after the first five very sparse weeks.
|Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary|
I continued to record Green-veined Whites and Speckled Woods until I emerged from the woods to where the Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries appear. And appear they did. I saw one and photographed it and another appeared later in this sector (No 6). Walking along the valley towards the sea I could see a bank of sea mist hugging the cliffs.
|24-spot Ladybird on Sea Campion|
It was Sector Eight that let me down. Here the footpath ascends the cliffs and the sun was hidden by the mist just overlapping the cliff edge. So no full house although I did search for and found four 24-spot Ladybirds. They were where they always are in season, on the Sea Campion that grows all the way up the cliff path. So the sector was no a total loss although no full house this time.
Once at the top of the cliff I turned inland with the mist behind me and the sun fully blazing once again. The last two sectors produced butterflies, notably three Wall Brown, another first species of the year.
Nine out of ten sectors produced 26 butterflies of 6 species giving me a target of a full house for next time.