Author Archives: John East

View of chocolate brown butterfly with cream markings on the wings

Speckled Wood. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona recently sent us this photo with the following comments:

Yet another dreary day, and I’m still looking forward to my first butterfly sighting of 2020. In the meantime, I have 2019’s photos to remind me of summer days. I spent some time playing peek-a-boo with this female Speckled Wood in my Broadstone garden on 31/07/19; every time I approached with my camera she flew away, to return when my back was turned! I did manage to get some photos eventually, and was interested to see that she has a pale ring in the cream spot next to the dark ring on her forewings. I haven’t noticed this on other Speckled Woods I have seen.

View of a reddish orange and black butterfly with white markings on wingtips resting on the ground.

Red Admiral. Photo: Penny Hawes

Penny was out on one of her favourite walks when she spotted this Red Admiral, the first butterfly she has seen this this year – it was sunning itself along the little woodland path to Sharford Bridge on Monday 20/01/2020.  The sunny conditions a few days ago seem to have lured a number of these out of their shelter and hiding places to take advantage of the sunshine and we hope they were able to find somewhere warm to shelter overnight from the cold frosty conditions.

View of reddish orange, brown and black butterfly with white markings on the wingtips resting near a muddy puddle.

Red Admiral. Photo: Geoge McCabe

George has sent us this photo of the first butterfly he saw this year when he was out for a walk and not even looking for butterflies – spotted at the Coppice behind the Littlemoor water tower, Weymouth on 19/01/2020.  George added that it seemed to enjoy the mud around the puddles!

View of a brown and black butterfly with some white markings resting on a stone wall.

Red Admiral. Photo: Paul Godier

Paul has sent us this photo of a Red Admiral he saw in South Street, Dorchester on Wednesday, 18/12/2019. He told us that it was flying vigorously to and fro across the street, above the Xmas shoppers on Market Day presumably seeking a roost for the winter. Quite remarkable that he was able to spot the butterfly in the busy street and to get this photo – it is quite late in the year to see a Red Admiral and this may well be the last photo of one sent to the Dorset BC Gallery for this year.

Photo of reddish orange and black butterfly with white markings near the wing tips whilst resting on a wall.

Red Admiral. Photo: Roger Peart

The lovely warm sunshine yesterday,  03/12/2019 seems to have encouraged a late appearance of Red Admirals in Dorset. This photo sent to us by Roger Peart of one he saw in the afternoon on a house wall in Wimborne is the second photo taken yesterday of this species sent in for the Dorset BC Gallery. It is good to know that butterflies are still responding to occasional warmer sunny days in a cold spell and can only hope that they find somewhere suitable to return to overnight.

View of a black and reddish orange butterfly with white markings near the wing tips. The butterfly is resting on the ground and is close to two fallen apples.

Red Admiral. Photo: John Kirwin

A welcome sunny morning after a cold night encouraged this somewhat damaged Red Admiral to visit John’s Harman’s Cross garden today, 03/12/2019. John tells us that this individual has visited his garden quite a lot recently to feed on the juices leaking from rotting apples. A pretty hardy butterfly – could this be our last reported Red Admiral sighting for the year?