This warm summer has give the butterflies a bit of a boost. For the first time in several years White Admirals were gliding along the wooded edge of Jubilee Pond. This is one of our less common species, a woodlander, favouring oak woods with sunny rides. It lays its eggs in shady spots on wild honeysuckle. Its flight is strong with quickening wing beats followed by long glides; at Jubilee Pond at least two individuals were sparring and chasing each other, landing briefly in sunny spots on the hydrangeas to bask.
Daffodil Meadow has good numbers of Marbled Whites (left), a handsome black and white species associated with grasslands. They nectar on scabious and knapweed, among other plants, and are often joined there by Meadow Browns (right), another common summer butterfly which is out in good numbers.
The most recent to appear is the Gatekeeper (left), smaller and more orange than the Meadow Brown. It likes to bask on bramble leaves along the edge of the meadow, and can often be seen nectaring on the yellow fleabane that grows in clumps along the edge of the mown path.