Tag Archives: Compton Down

Two butterflies, one with closed wings and one with open, vividly blue, wings, in mating position

Adonis Blue. Photo: Shona Refoy

Shona says:

Following Mark Pike’s comment that Compton Down was awash with butterflies, I went up there yesterday morning (24.05). I got there early, so watched the Down come alive as it warmed up.

The Adonis Blues were too numerous to count, there must have been well over 100!

I saw at least 8 mating pairs, and saw males flying while mating, so the females (with wings closed) were towed around backwards behind them!

Very small butterlfy with pale blue underwings with black spots on a daisy flower

Small Blue. Photo: Mark Pike

The Small Blues are just out. Mark spotted this one at Compton Down (North Dorset) on 07/05/2019. They have also been seen at Fontmell Down, not far from Compton Down, and 16 were counted on the Weymouth Relief Road cutting.

They are tiny butterflies, appearing a silver-grey colour in flight. They are quite rare, but became more widespread in Dorset between 2010 and 2014. Nationally, they have reduced in abundance.

Marsh Fritillary on Compton Down

View of a fresh Marsh Fritiallary from the top

Marsh Fritiallry. Photo: Mark Pike

Mark says:  Thought you might like these couple of pics of a superbly fresh Marsh Fritillary taken today (10/05/17) on Compton Down. Had me running up and down the darned hillside for a few hours but eventually nailed the blighter!


Two Holly Blues joined together, seen sideways on

Holly Blues mating. Photo: Dave Law

Dave says: “Considering Holly Blues were quite scarce last summer its great to see them almost everywhere around North Dorset . This pair were seen at Compton Down [on 19/04/2017] along with several Green Hairstreak and plenty of Speckled Wood. However across the valley on Fontmell Down it appears worryingly lifeless within the boundaries of the fencing. Only a few Grizzled Skippers seen and hardly any nectar sources plus cattle grazing still going on ! Outside the boundaries plenty of cowslip, daisy and hawkweeds . Hope it rapidly improves “.

Forester Moth on Compton Down

Bright Green moth on a bright pink flower

Forester moth. Photo: Gordon Cryer

What a lovely combination of colours: a bright green moth on a bright pink flower. Or to be more precise, a Forester moth on a Pyramidal Orchid, June 11th, taken at Compton Down on 11 June. A rare moth, so Gordon did well to catch this shot.