Monday, 7 October 2019

Last of the summer Butterflies !

 The Clouded Yellow is usally my last sought after butterfly of the year, with just one sighting seen last year at Rainham Marshes in Essex. This year I was hoping to see some in Kent.

September, and several reports of Clouded Yellows at Oare Marshes caught my attention, I couldn't resist a visit, but after a long walk down the Swale towards Uplees in some sunny but probably to windy conditions brought no sightings.
 I walked around the East Flood not really expecting to see any now, until a bright yellow butterfly flew up from the path ahead, catching me by surprise, but typically it did not linger and disappeared across the inaccessible meadows next to the flood, but a sighting nevertheless.

 No more sightings for me here which was disappointing, a brief view and no photograph.

I was given some information by another butterfly enthusiast from 'Facebook' on a possibly good location to see Clouded Yellows and also the Wall Brown another butterfly I struggle to see well.

The location , Cliffe Pools, a site quite close to where I live, but a vast area to look for butterflies but worth a try.

As I walked from the car park down towards the river wall butterflies started to appear, mainly Small White and a few Small Heath, but expectantly a few Clouded Yellows started to appear , all very restless and none settling.

Small White

Small Heath

 I passed the Flamingo Pool, as it was named in my bird watching days from years gone by and walked towards the river wall. My first of many sightings of the Wall Brown started to appear, more than I have ever seen before.

Worn Wall Brown female

male Wall Brown

The embankment behind the river wall was alive with butterflies,  Small White the most numerous, Large White, Wall Brown,  a very worn Painted Lady, a very fresh Small Tortoiseshell, Brown Argus, Common Blue, Small Copper and finally a few Clouded Yellow, with just one settling for a photograph.

Clouded Yellow

Small Tortoiseshell
Brown Argus

Small Copper

Common Blue female

One last surprise sighting were these small Bees , It seemed to me at the time were making a higher pitch  hum than the usual carder bees seen. I was thinking  maybe a Shrill Carder Bee but having never seen one before I wasn't' sure.
I managed a couple of photographs and after an I.D. request discovered that they were in fact Brown Banded Carder Bee's also quite scarce, so nice to see.

Brown Banded Carder Bee    Bombus Humilis

A successful days wildlife watching, Clouded Yellow, Wall Brown and the Brown Banded Carder Bee best sightings of the day.

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