The decline continues
GH, GK and BG walked this week's transect on Monday afternoon. The weather was suitably warm but cloudy (except for a brief interlude when the sun put in an appearance) with a stiff breeze.
The downward trend in numbers reported last week has accelerated rapidly, so although we saw butterflies from six species, the total number of individuals has plummeted to only 24, whereas last week's count was 97. With this decline rate it's feasible that we may run out of butterflies to count before the end of the transect season in four weeks' time. That would be a first!
Goats outnumber butterflies on Coneyboro Hill
Fewer species and numbers
The five species that we recorded were in low but not unusual numbers: it was the missing species (that have boosted other years' week 21 counts) that have so reduced this week's figures. In previous years we've seen Brimstones, Small Coppers, Silver-washed Fritillaries, Dark Green Fritillaries, Brown Arguses, Large Whites and Gatekeepers.
As I write this report we've had a few hours of the first heavy rain from several months but this will probably will not benefit our butterfly population.
Survey by Brian Gardner, Graham H and Graham K
submitted to Butterfly Conservation (UKBMS).
Report by Brian Gardner. Pics by Graham K and Brian G.
Click to enlarge.
A cooler day?
Next Wednesday, 17th August, it's hoped that as many WoodChippers as possible will join the Surrey Wildlife Trust/Butterfly Conservation Trust work party with an aim of taking out an area of encroaching thorn scrub in Fames Rough. As reported regularly in our blog in recent years, the scrub is steadily taking over what was until recently a butterfly-rich flower meadow. See recent emails from Andy, Graham K and Richard C for more details of the work.
Or contact Graham K direct: email@example.com
Survey by Brian Gardner, Graham H and Graham K submitted to Butterfly Conservation (UKBMS).
Report by Brian Gardner. Pic by Graham K. Click to enlarge.
One that got away
Survey by Brian Gardner and Graham H submitted to Butterfly Conservation (UKBMS).
Report and pics by Brian Gardner.
Click on pics to enlarge.
Here you'll find details and pictures from the team carrying out our regular butterfly surveys (known as transects) over 26 weeks during Spring and Summer.