Friday, 29 June 2018

Transect Update - Week 13.

Once again I chose Sunday 24th to undertake my 'Week 13' transect walk on Ashtead Common under a cloudless sky and a temperature of around 24 deg. C so I was thankful for the overhead green canopy providing some respite from the sun.

On the quarter mile walk to the start of the transect I always stop at a sunny open spot where there is an area of brambles and this often provides an indication of what I may record on the actual transect.

On this occasion there were several Meadow Browns, Ringlet, Large Skippers and a single Marbled White (left) made a brief nectar stop. Unfortunately no Marbled Whites turned up during my timed walk. 

One of the resident Common Buzzards made a fly past as I started my timed walk.

Section 1 produced three new species for this year. First was the Ringlet (above) and ultimately I saw them in all 8 sections recording a total of 58 individuals. Next was a single Purple Hairstreak flying up through one of the oaks.

At the beginning of Section 3 I found another Purple Hairstreak settled on the bracken and when it turned around I noticed a black addition (see below) to the centre of its underwing. I am guessing this may be some form of tick that has attached itself. Sections 4 and 8 also produced single sightings of this species.

The third new addition seen in Sections 1 and 3 was the Silver-washed Fritillary and I logged a total of just four males with only one stopping long enough for a photo call.

As expected the most prominent species was the Meadow Brown again recorded in all sections of the transect with a total of 73 logged.

White Admiral (above) turned up in 5 out of 8 sections with a total of 10 recorded during my walk. With a cumulative count of 27 individuals on my last two walks makes 2018 the best year for this species.

Finally the walk produced sightings of 10 species including Small/Essex Skippers, Large Skipper, Large White and Green-veined White with an overall total of 166 individual butterflies recorded.


  1. I'm going to say it again, you have some totally cool butterflies over the pond. I love all of the spots especially the Ringlet. Hope your weather is cooler over your way. We're scorching over here in the States. Carol

  2. We are getting large numbers of butterflies here too. I am always struck by the similiarity of so many species on both sides of the Atlantic.

  3. A lovely set of images Frank.
    Well done getting the Purple Hairstreak.

  4. That is a fantastic selection of species. More than I can ever hope to see on my transect. Someone has kindly offered to walk mine these next two weeks while I'm on holiday in Spain.

  5. Great shots - is the hot dry summer good or bad for these butterflies?

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne


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