Tag Archives: Painted Lady

An orange butterfly with black and white markings nectaring on a blue flower

Painted Lady. Photo: Paul Godier

An orange butterfly with black markings resting on a branch

Small Copper. Photo: Paul Godier

These two photos were sent in by Paul with the following comments:

Boscombe Cliff Gardens are having a butterfly surge right now,12/09/2020. The Buddleia is having a second burst of flowering, just in time for these second broods. Literally dozens of Large and Small Whites. Several Red Admirals and a blue of some sort on the wing. Hummingbird hawk moths around too.  But I was especially pleased to see my first Painted Lady of the year (I usually see loads) and also this Small Copper.

An orange butterfly with black and white markings resting on gravel

Painted Lady. Photo: Ann Barlow

View of a brown buttefly with some lighter markings resting on gravel

Painted Lady. Photo: Ann Barlow

Two photos from Ann sent with the following comments:

A couple of photos of our first Painted Lady in our front garden in Corfe Mullen yesterday, 22/08/2020.   Very nice to see one at last – they are very camouflaged on our gravel, so I could have missed some earlier visitors….

An orange butterfly with black and white markings nectaring on a pink Buddleia flower

Painted Lady. Photo: Edmund Mackrill

Edmund sent us this photo taken yesterday, 14/08/2020 commenting as follows:

How scarce Painted Ladies are this year. This one was in Tout Quarry nectaring on Buddleia and sunbathing. It is in pristine condition.

View of an orange butterfly with black and white markings nectaring on a pink Buddleia flower

Painted Lady. Photo: Gary Holderness

View of an orange and brown butterfly with black and white markings nectaring on a pink Buddleia flower

Painted Lady. Photo: Gary Holderness

Two photos from Gary sent in with the following comments:

I’ve been looking at your website for most of the summer now, very informative.  Thought I’d send in this picture of a Painted Lady butterfly I took in my back garden in Ferndown today, 11/08/2020.  The first I’ve seen this year – it spent all day on the Buddleia bush.

Editor’s Note:  So far this year the Painted Lady has not been seen in large numbers in the county with only 56 sightings of them reported to Dorset BC to date.

Orange butterfly with black and white markings resting on green foliage

Painted Lady. Photo: Mark Pike

Pale brown and orange butterfly with black and white markings nectaring on a purple flower

Painted Lady. Photo: Mark Pike

Mark was at Fontmell Down yesterday, 03/08/2020 looking for Silver-spotted Skippers which he found (see earlier posting) when this super-fresh Painted Lady landed right in front of him.  He told us that he was more surprised by the Painted Lady than the Silver-spotted Skippers adding that this Painted Lady is the first one he has seen this year.

View of a resting orange butterfly with black and white markings

Painted Lady. Photo: Clive Hill

Clive sent us this photo of the first Painted Lady he has seen this year – he found it very late in the day on Thursday, 07/05/2020 sunning itself in the undergrowth on the heath land around Broadstone Golf Course.

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

Painted Lady. Photo: Roger Hewitt

Roger sent us this photo taken on 03/04/2020 with the following comments:

I found this very early Painted Lady this morning just below Culpepper’s Dish and it makes you wonder if some are over wintering.  Its not been cold this year, and of late there have been strong northerly winds which wouldn’t help the Painted Lady. Just a thought – would love to know what you all think.

Having consulted our Dorset BC Recording Officer and Chairman, they advise that it is very difficult to have any certainty about the origins of this Painted Lady. They are not supposed to survive the winter unless there has been little or no frost.  One famous example (thought to be in Devon), was a Painted Lady which had been marked in late summer & emerged safe & well the next year. Research showed that the area was in a pocket free of frost.  There have been early migrations in the past but there appears to be little evidence of this so far this year – according to the main BC website the first one recorded this year was in Gloucestershire on 21/01/2020.  In West Dorset one year a large number were found early in the year but further research established that they had been living specimens dumped from a commercial home breeding kit which had probably been kept in too warm a place.

Does anyone know if there are there any likely pockets protected from frost near Culpepper’s Dish which could have sheltered this Painted Lady over winter?

View of 3 different species of orange and black butterflies on green Ivy plant

Red Admiral, Comma and Painted Lady. Photo: George McCabe

George sent us this photo he took on 06/10/2019 when he was walking on the Old Coach Road from Upwey to the Ridgeway. He added that there were plenty of Red Admirals about together with Painted Ladies and Commas and also a Peacock which he tried hard to get into the photo as well.  The butterflies were all brought out by the warm, sunny day and like so many found the Ivy a great source of nectar.

View of two butterflies on a pink flower - one orange and black and the other red with white and black eye spot markings.

Peacock and Red Admiral. Photo: Shona Refoy

View of two butterflies on pink flowers - both orange and black but one also with white wing markings.

Painted Lady and Comma. Photo: Shona Refoy

Following a recent very productive butterfly visit to Kingston Lacy Kitchen Garden,  Shona wrote in to tell us that she went back there again on 02/10/2019 and on a Eupatorium in the corner found the favourite nectar source where she saw 1 Red Admiral, 1 Painted Lady, 1 Large White, and at least 2 Peacocks and Commas just on this one plant. Shona has sent in these photos of some of them to share with us adding that she loves photos of non-matching pairs of butterflies – with results like these we can understand why.

View of orange and brown butterfly on lilac coloured Buddleia flower

Painted Lady. Photo: David and Frances Lonsdale

David and Frances sent in this photo taken on 20/09/2019 of a rather tatty Painted Lady which they tell us has been in their garden for a few days.  It has spent it’s time re-fuelling on Buddleia and despite it’s condition has still been capable of strong flight – this is one determined butterfly battling to survive for as long as possible.