Tag Archives: Cerne Abbas

a bright orange brown butterfly resting on leaves

Large Skipper. Photo: Shona Refoy

large Skipper with wings closed resting on a leaf.

Large Skipper. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona found a good few Large Skippers at Giant’s Hill, Cerne Abbas on 1/06/19 and was pleased to get a photo of the only female (top) she saw that day before tripping on uneven ground and frightening it off.

Butterfly photography can be a dangerous hobby especially on a hillside such as Giant’s hill!šŸ˜±

view of three Duke of Burgundys in a courtship ritual

Duke of Burgundy. Photo: Paul Swann

view of three Dukes in a courtship ritual

Duke of Burgundys. Photo: Paul Swann

Most people are happy to see one Duke of Burgundy at Cerne Abbas on the only site accessible to the public where they can be found, but Paul found these three on 12/05/19 flitting excitedly around a Hawthorn bush, in a courtship ritual. Continue reading

White moth with darker markings hiding in grass

Carpet moth. Photo: David Parish

David might not have found Duke of Burgundy on Black Hill (Cerne Abbas) on 16/05/2019, but he did find this Common Carpet Moth. He did well to catch the photo, they usually disappear into the undergrowth at high speed!

Orange butterfly with brown markings.

Duke of Burgundy. Photo: Mark Wright

A lovely shot of a Duke by Mark, taken at Cerne Giant Hill, which has the only publicly accessible colony of this butterfly in Dorset. Butterfly Conservation Dorset Branch regularly undertakes conservation work on the site to ensure its survival.

Dark brown butterfy with extensive orange marking plus paler underwing marks

Duke of Burgundy. Photo: John Woodruff

Spotted by John on Giant Hill, Cerne Abbas on 16/05/2019. He reports that all the Dukes out were to be see at the base of the hill, in the undergrowth. Catching this specimen among the grass really gives you an idea of how small this butterfly is.

view of a Marsh Fritillary with wings fully open

Marsh Fritillary. Photo: Dave Law

Dave found this freshly emerged Marsh Fritillary at Cerne Abbas on 15/05/18. It has one brood and is generally seen in the UK May- July.

It is probably the most variable of all the European fritillaries in respect to size and ground colour of the upper sides of fore and hind-wings.

It has adapted to a wide variety of habitats in Europe but in the UK it is mostly found in grassy, flowery places which hosts the caterpillarĀ  foodplant, devils bit scabious.

Marsh Fritillary eggs at Cerne Abbas

Large number of orange eggs underneath a leaf.

Eggs of the Marsh Fritillary. Photo: Dave Law

Dave says this was one of quite a few egg batches found on various Dorset sites, which is hopefully good news for future generations of the butterfly. The eggs will hatch into caterpillars, which hibernate over the winter, to then form chrysalises and emerge as the adult butterfly in May the following year.

Dave took the picture at Cerne Abbas on 12/06/2017