You Beauty

I had a Camberwell Beauty fly strongly NW over Deans Lane at about 12.05 this afternoon. I had stopped off for a break and to see if there were any raptors moving… more in hope than expectation. It was sunny and warm with a few scattered clouds and a moderate SW breeze.

The insect flew over my head, so I first picked it up about 2ft above my head and about 4ft in front of me. It was clearly a large Vannessid but about 10% bigger than a Peacock. Underside was blackish with a pale broad border to the sides of fore and hind wing except the leading edges. As the butterfly flew north it followed the hillside down remaining about  6 – 8 ft off the ground so the Upperwing became visible. This was a dark maroon with the pale border being a yellowish white with two small ‘tails’ on the hind wing. A row of blue spots was also clearly noted inside the border on all wings.

The butterfly was in view for less than a minute as it powered NW interspersing glides with a series of fast wing beats.

No other butterflies were noted on this track only a few whites flitting around the grassy hill side.

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3 responses to “You Beauty

  1. Steve Lister

    While casually watching Purple Hairstreaks at Swithy Res yesterday a Silver-washed Fritillary flew past me – just goes to show there are a few migrants around.

  2. thedrunkbirder

    That’s another good record Steve. They are almost surrounding us now and it can’t be too long before they move back in… I have long argued that we should be looking to improve habitat for Butterflies and maybe reintroducing them rather than large fish-eating raptors… the birds will hopefully follow and in a few cases if we can get habitat right reintroductions such as Corn Bunting might get underway.

  3. thedrunkbirder

    The Camberwell Beauty is now on Trektellen.

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