East Lothian sightings June 2016

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East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Thu 02 Jun 2016 21:37

I went on a quest to find Speckled Woods around the Pencaitland area today. They have made their way right along the coast, up the Tyne as far as Haddington and up into the Lammermuirs, but strangely there is a blank area on the map around Pencaitland. I headed up along the River Tyne from Haddington towards Pencaitland stopping several times at likely spots, but could only find Orange Tips, Green-veined Whites and Large Whites.
I walked all around the woods in Pencaitland by the River in what looked like perfect Speckled Wood habitat. Nice sheltered, open woodland with Sycamores with the sun shining on them. Just as I was about to give up a Speckled Wood dropped down onto a dock leaf in front of me. I watched it for a while and it flew to a grass stem, slid down it and started to lay an egg. Sadly it was interrupted by a primary school class on a nature walk, and it flew off!
So that is Speckled Woods being recorded in just about every corner of East Lothian. Just need to find them in Gifford now. :D
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Sat 04 Jun 2016 15:42

I was just out walking the dog when a Painted Lady flew up in front of us. Unfortunately it was just at the moment that we met a friend with their dog, so I lost sight of it. However, I returned and after initially not finding it, I spotted the Painted Lady in a Hawthorn. As I approached I noticed there were two on the same bush.
We had our first East Lothian Painted Lady a couple of weeks ago and I saw one down near Selkirk last weekend.
With warm weather and southerly winds forecast, I wonder if we are due to have an invasion of Painted Ladies?
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Yesterday lunchtime I went to look for Speckled Woods along the John Muir Way between North Berwick and East Linton. Despite the good weather I didn't see any, so I wonder if we are between generations at the moment?
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby IAC » Sat 04 Jun 2016 22:09

Nick,
A very substantial number of Painted Lady flying in of the sea from the east this past few days. I saw 12 today with others reporting multiple numbers along the coastal path and inland. They are joined by a swarm of Diamondback Moth numbering many billions probably. My theory is that they have come through with that stormy low pressure on the continent and slung-shot around the north and spun in to the east...an unusual direction for as you say it is usually from the south.

Iain
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Sun 05 Jun 2016 01:42

Thanks Iain,
That is good news! Abbie sent me an e-mail to say that two were seen in the Lammermuirs today near Garvald.
Nick
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby wgell » Sun 05 Jun 2016 18:43

Yesterday I was walking dogs round Butterdean Wood. This wood has always seemed to be bereft of butterflies other than one or two adventurous Ringlets and GV Whites in summer from my experience. However, yesterday I spotted a Speckled Wood along the main track from the car park. Hopefully they'll establish a lasting colony there it is ideal for them.

Today I was at Bara Loch and Saltoun Wood. Some GV Whites, OTs and a couple of Peacocks at Bara but also two Speckled Woods. First time I've seen them there. No sign of any Small Coppers.

At Saltoun very little happening despite the nice weather although I did finally see my first Small Coppers of the year. Just two though...

No sign of any Painted Ladies.... :(
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby ricowells » Mon 06 Jun 2016 00:10

Another visit to Linn Dean today, following several near fruitless visits in April/May. What a transformation! Flowers (see example photo) and insects in abundance….with large-ish numbers of butterflies…and it was hot...
Heading down the gully I was met with numbers of small heaths…the most numerous butterfly of the day, overall at least 20 but could have been many more. Small coppers were next circa 10+. On a south facing sheltered slope I picked a comfy spot and was treated to arial displays from "dog fighting" small coppers and small heaths. Several flyby whites zipped by frustratingly hard to identify but eventually a green veined white settled to have its photo taken. A solitary peacock then appeared near the burn. 2 blues were further up the slope, clear view of the underwing looked like female common blues though unfortunately they set off at speed without stopping for a photo. Looking online at ID for similar butterflies I did have a moment of doubt when looking at similar species and seeing how similar the underwing of the northern brown argus is…knowing it was sighted there last year but on reflection pretty sure there was a blue colouration. Lots of moths both micro and larger some quite striking (see photo). The one disappointment was not seeing green hairstreak or so I thought. Searched all of the spots I had seen them last year without any joy. However, looking through the shots when I got home…I found one…I had been shooting into the sun and not realised what it was at the time as it flew off almost immediately. All in all a good day.
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Tue 07 Jun 2016 20:30

wgell wrote:Yesterday I was walking dogs round Butterdean Wood. This wood has always seemed to be bereft of butterflies other than one or two adventurous Ringlets and GV Whites in summer from my experience. However, yesterday I spotted a Speckled Wood along the main track from the car park. Hopefully they'll establish a lasting colony there it is ideal for them.

Today I was at Bara Loch and Saltoun Wood. Some GV Whites, OTs and a couple of Peacocks at Bara but also two Speckled Woods. First time I've seen them there. No sign of any Small Coppers.

At Saltoun very little happening despite the nice weather although I did finally see my first Small Coppers of the year. Just two though...

No sign of any Painted Ladies.... :(


Excellent, Will. You have added a couple of new dots to the distribution map for Speckled Woods. I was just thinking last week that it was amazing that we hadn't seen any in Butterdean. They now seem to be surrounding Gifford, with Abbie reporting them from Blinkbonny and Pishwanton and your Bara Loch records. I'll have to go for a serious look for them tomorrow with the dog!
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby georgehogg » Tue 07 Jun 2016 22:42

Here in Macmerry,not far from Butterdean Wood ,I have had two travelling Speckled Woods pass through recently,though neither stopped for formal identification.
Must admit I am becoming rather blasé about speckles and in danger of not checking whether those I see are in new areas !
However,surely that must be a good sign !
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby NickMorgan » Sun 19 Jun 2016 23:28

I received an e-mail today from Abbie to say that she saw a Ringlet at Longniddry and a Small Skipper at Aberlady!
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Re: East Lothian sightings June 2016

Postby IAC » Sun 19 Jun 2016 23:49

Hi Nick,
Small Skipper would be quite something on the 19th of June whilst Large Skipper have hardly started emerging. Check for possibility of that being Large Skipper!! If not a Large Skipper, then it is still very remarkable.

Iain.
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