Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Dellfield: First Small Blue & Grass Rivulets

Butterfly Transect Survey results for 2014 reveal that 78 Small Blues were recorded at Chiswell Green’s Butterfly World, 1 at Heartwood Forest, near St Albans, and 3 near Pirton. That was it for Hertfordshire! The Small Blue is all but absent from the majority of the County. It’s not difficult to imagine then my shock when I found one fluttering along the edge of Dellfield meadow at Westbrook Hay yesterday! I was very glad David K was with me as a corroborating witness and to reassure me that I wasn’t hallucinating. It was the first Small Blue either of us had seen in Hertfordshire and also the 30th species of butterfly recorded on Trust land.

Small Blue
Grass Rivulet

Along with the Small Blue, we also caught up with 2 Grass Rivulet (Perizoma albulata) moths, a County rarity, found at the weekend by Roger Prue. And, a Small Yellow Underwing (Panemeria tenebrata) moth, which turned out to be a female ovipositing on Common Mouse-ear. A quick check at the NE end of Bovingdon Reach meadow was rewarded with seeing the first flowers on the returning Bee Orchids (Ophrys apifera). All in all, a fantastic morning!

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