Adonis Blue. Photo: George McCabe
George found this Adonis Blue on 25/08/2017 whilst walking up the cutting on the Weymouth Relief Road.
It is so good to know that butterflies, especially this declining species, have inhabited this area after the extensive roadworks which took place a few years ago.
This Adonis would be from the second brood late July-mid September and is already losing the distinctive black chequered fringe around its wings which is a reliable identification feature for this species.
Brimstone. Photo: George McCabe
Clouded Yellow. Photo: George McCabe
It’s rather useful George caught these two on the same walk, as people new to butterflies can hear about the Clouded Yellow, then see a Brimstone and think they’ve seen one. As these shots show, the Brimstone is a lighter more acid yellow, and the wings are a very distinctive shape. You will rarely catch sight of the upper wings of either.
Taken on the Weymouth Relief Road cutting on 25/07/2017.
Small Blue second generation. Photo: Richard Belding
Another shot caught on the walk that goes by the side of the Weymouth Relief Road, taken on 18/07/2017. This tends to be a very short-lived brood, so he did well to catch it, though we know it was still present on 24/07/2017.
Small Copper. Photo: Richard Belding
Taken by Richard by the side of the Weymouth Relief Road on 18/07/2017. He says, though it was windy, he recorded 14 species.
The Small Copper can have three broods in one year. This will be from the second brood and may breed to cause a third brood seen in later September and early October. The first Small Copper this year was reported to the website on 27 March. Have a look at the comparison between last year and this on our This year v last year page and you will see that the whole of last year brought 160 sightings to the website, while we are only in the middle of the second brood this year and have already recorded 129.
Silver Y moth. Photo: George McCabe
Geroge thinks this looks like it’s got a scary face! Seen on the Weymouth Relief Road cutting on 12/07/2017.
This is a useful identification shot: when you see a Silver Y ‘at rest’ it is very often rapidly beating its wings, so all you see is a blur.
Cinnabar moth caterpillars. Photo: George McCabe
The yellow and black rugby-shirt stripes very clearly show these as the caterpillars of the Cinnabar Moth, George describes where he too the photo: “Near the cycle path just of the Weymouth relief road near the water overflow ponds near the roundabouts”. Taken on 12/07/2017.
Meadow Browns. Photo: George McCabe
This pair of Meadow Browns are busy ensuring the next generation; taken on a walk up the Weymouth relief road cuttin on16/06/2017
The wildlife site to the side of the Weymouth Relief Road is humming with insect life, as evidenced by this amazing photo, showing at least twelve Six-spot Burnet moths on the flower stalk of a Vipers Bugloss Plant, and Stephen Brown tells is that he counted 362 on his walk on 13 June 2017!
Six-spot Burnet moths on Vipers Bugloss. Photo: Stephen Brown
Reports are also coming in of Adonis Blues and Grizzled Skippers, both not seen here before, and the one bee orchid seen last year has increased to over 70.
It only shows that when we create (or return) the right habitat for the wildlife, they will come if they are close enough to get there. We are very grateful to Phil Sterling and Dorset County Council for having the vision to create this wonderful area when putting through the new road.
Burnet Moth. Photo: George McCabe
We’ve had shots of the Burnet Moth caterpillar and chrysalis: now meet the moth! Probably a Six-spot Burnet, it is on an Ox-eye daisy, and if you look carefully, you can see there are a lot more on the bright blue flowers of the viper’s bugloss behind it. Caught by George on the walk at the side of the Weymouth Relief Road 03/06/2017.
Caterpillar of the Burnet Moth. Photo: Simon Fenner
This was taken by the side of the Weymouth Relief Road on 29/05/2017. This area is turning into a superb butterfly spot.
The caterpillar is that of one of the Burnet moths, probably the Six-spot. THe white blob on the other side of the stalk is a chrysalis cocoon of the same species.
Simon reports there were over 50 chryslis and a couple of caterpillars.