Sussex Still Going Strong

Although the female Brown Hairstreaks are now appearing later in the day (12.30 pm rather than 11.15 am), I was left in doubt that the betulae season is still going strong when I visited Steyning Rifle Range today. Of the 7 females I saw, 3 were in mint condition and didn't appear ready to lay eggs yet, making only brief sorties from the master trees to relieve the boredom that this species must suffer spectacularly. As always the action petered out rapidly soon after 2.00 pm and at 2.30 pm, despite warm and sunny conditions, I watched a female go to bed in an ash tree, finding a secure perch on the top of a shaded bud before bringing her antennae parallel and entering the Land of Nod. This butterfly is shockingly lazy.

Steyning is an excellent site and even in this relatively poor season I've now seen nearly 40 females here. When time allows I'll write more about the Rifle Range and how we manage the habitat specifically for the Brownies.


40 females???????? Neil, i am so envious of you right now. Also, id like to add that i think i would make an excellent female Brownie. Going back to bed at 2:30pm? What a life! :)

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