East Lothian Sightings March 2016

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East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Sun 13 Mar 2016 19:47

Abbie Marland reported a Peacock today at Aberlady Bay. :D
Forecast looks good for tomorrow, so possibly an opportunity to find some butterflies!
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby jpgn » Mon 14 Mar 2016 21:25

It was indeed Nick! A Red Admiral, 2 Small Tortoiseshells and a Peacock in Longniddry (once the fog rolled away late morning), plus another Peacock in Port Seton later in the afternoon.

Also Red Admiral, Peacock and Small Tort reported today on the lothiannaturenews discussion group today.

Jim
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IAC » Mon 14 Mar 2016 22:23

Hi all,
Great news all round. I am a few Small Tortoiseshell light down here. Early yet though. We seem to have all the Commas. Great to hear about Red Admirals surviving the winter, though thats no great shakes these days I suppose.

Iain.
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby jpgn » Sun 20 Mar 2016 19:06

3 more Small Tortoiseshells in the last couple of days. A very faded individual in Longniddry yesterday (19th) and then one briefly in our garden in Gullane this morning and another basking at Saltcoats Castle later in the day.

Jim
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IanWood » Mon 21 Mar 2016 18:26

1xpeacock just north of Oldhamstocks yesterday, my first butterfly of the year.

Ian
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IanWood » Fri 25 Mar 2016 22:13

Pearl-bordered Fritillary?

Fairly certain I saw a fresh looking one at my home in Musselburgh today. Garden was sunny and sheltered from wind and it took off from lawn and was gone.

However, guide book says caterpillars hibernate over winter with adults appearing in late April.

Unable to see what else it may have been if not this species.

Advice/comments most welcome,

Ian
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby ricowells » Fri 25 Mar 2016 23:52

3 hours walking the dunes north of muirfield and archerfield produced….one pristine comma….still its a start for 2016...
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IAC » Sat 26 Mar 2016 00:57

Ian Wood,
The likelihood of Pearl Bordered Fritillary, or any Fritillary in March are, sadly, pretty much non existant. I have no idea how familiar you are with the Comma Butterfly that has quite a resemblance to the Fritillaries and are certainly flying now. I am convinced this is what you saw. The Comma regularly visit gardens in spring, summer and autumn...allegedly...I have never seen one in my garden. They are quite a shy Butterfly that can afford just glimpses at times. I hope that helps you out.

Iain.
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IanWood » Sat 26 Mar 2016 10:57

Thanks very much for your reply Iain.

Your first sentence is certainly how I interpreted the comments in the Collins guide book that I use.

We do get Commas occasionally in the garden and I only got the briefest of glances with no opportunity to look at wing shape. From my glimpse I thought that the one I saw had a greater density of black spots than a Comma hence my thoughts about a fritillary.

I'll keep looking!

Regards

Ian
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Re: East Lothian Sightings March 2016

Postby IAC » Sat 26 Mar 2016 11:11

Ian,
The Comma has quite a range of variables when it comes to shape, colour and spots. They can be very dark or light, large and small. The females can appear to have rounded rather than scalloped wings. In summer there is a lighter less marked version the hutchinsoni Comma that breeds for a second time from July with a second generation appearing in October. I photographed this one below yesterday. This is a much darker version of a regular Comma, possibly an aberration on some kind. Dark outer edges and a very dark underwing.


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