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The Butterflies and other insects of the U.K.

By Dave Hatton

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2012 HIGHLIGHTS and SUMMARY

     

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Well!,  what a diabolical year for bad weather, it is a wonder that any lepidoptera was seen at all in the earlier half of the year. It has been so wet at times that some species that I see every year have not shown up at all. Still it has still been an interesting year with several new species turning up in my garden at home. Micro species I had not seen at home before included; Esperia sulphurella, the Holly Tortrix, Acleris laterana, Crassa unitella, Ypsolopha scabrella, Dichrorampha acuminatana, and Udea prunalis. Although not new one I don't see very often is Ypsolopha sequella. The micro's although small and difficult to make out, are often quite beautiful when seen under close magnification.

   
 

Ypsolopha Sequella, Pudsey, West Yorkshire August 2012.

     

Ypsolopha Scabrella, Farsley, Pudsey, August 2012.

 
 

Butterflies particularly seem to have suffered from the wet conditions this year. There were very few of the usual spring butterflies, and a long gap between the spring and summer broods. Although the number sightings of butterflies during the summer were generally low, there were odd exceptions. One nice day in the earlier half of July, I saw over two hundred butterflies in just over an hour at 'Little Scrubs Meadow,' in the Bardney Limewoods. These mainly were comprised of three species, Small Skipper, Meadow Brown and Ringlet. There were also many Six-spot Burnet on the wing. Many species of butterflies and moths were emerging late, and sometimes erratically in fits and starts.

   

Common Blue butterflies (second brood) were only just starting to emerge during the last few days of August in Lincolnshire; a good example of late emergences. Whilst on holiday in Lincolnshire in July, and again in September we saw quite a few moths and other interesting insects. Some of the species sighted were Pebble Hook-tip, Small Dusty Wave, Lozotaenia forsterana, a day flying Red-breasted Carrion Beetle, Mullein larva, Chrysotoxum bicinctum, Latticed Heath, Sericomyia silentis, Volucella pellucens, Ectemnius ruficornis, Migrant Hawker, Southern Hawker, Sloe Shield bug, male and an unusually marked Marbled Beauty caught after dark outside our hotel.

 
     

Bardney Woods, Speckled Wood, Lincolnshire September 2012.

     
   

As well as new micro's recorded at home, there has been a few new macro moths. Some of the more notable ones include, the Small Quaker and the Small Fan-foot, two moths I have only seen on a few occasions. Also sighted were The Lychnis, Lesser Swallow Prominent, Centre-barred Sallow, and Freyer's Pug. Although not new, the Double-striped Pug doesn't appear every year. This picture is of a freshly emerged, and well marked typical specimen. The Peppered Moth is not a frequent visitor in the garden, neither is the Single-dotted Wave, so it was pleasing to see these freshly emerged specimens this year. Some species seem to have done better than others, fingers crossed for next year.

   
 

Lesser Swallow Prominent, Farsley, Pudsey, August 2012.

     

Centre-barred Sallow, Farsley, Pudsey, September 2012.

 
             
 

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