From Doug. I spent a couple of days last week visiting “Boylins” which had been a good site for butterflies before the new reed beds were built. The site has started to recover and is yet again good for butterflies. I recorded Orange Tip, Brimstone, Dingy Skipper, Small Copper, Comma, Peacock and Speckled Wood.
Alwyn reports Large White, Small White, Green-veined White, Orange Tip female and Speckled Wood butterflies in his Penistone garden.
Kent reports his best night moth trapping so far this year in Ardsley on May 10 with 14 species: Garden Carpet 1, Common Pug 2, Muslin 3, Flame Shoulder 1, Bright line Brown Eye 1, Spectacle 3, Bee Moth 1, Coxcomb Prominent 2, Oak Hook Tip 1, Toadflax Pug 1, Red green Carpet 1, Epiphyas postvittana 2, Sycamore 1, Cabbage Moth 1.
From Catherine and Mark. We’ve had some lovely insect sightings in the Dearne valley this weekend, including a Golden Bloomed Long-horned Beetle, a Wasp Beetle and a couple of day flying moths: Silver-Ground and Green Carpet.
Mark also acquired a new hoverfly for his life list. He’s been looking every year and finally found it on his doorstep – the Ramsons Hoverfly. It comes out with the flowers needless to say… A shorter walk on the local Common gave loads of Small Copper butterflies and a couple of Dingy Skippers.
And I don’t know if anyone else has noticed but it seems to be a bumper year for Green Long-Horned Moths. We’ve seen clouds of them around the trees and bushes for a couple of weeks now.
From Stuart. This past week we have seen large swarms of Hawthorn Flies (also called St Mark’s Flies) whenever the sun has come out to lift the temperature so allowing the black gangly legged males to display.
This has not gone unnoticed by the local Starlings many of which now have young to feed. They have been filling up on those insects still on the ground and in the grass. Some were holding them in their beaks like a puffin with sand eels before flying off to feed to the greedy noisy chicks!
On the morning of Tuesday the 5th of May, I was taking the bins out after my porridge and looked up to see the fantastic sight of six Swifts racing across the sky; I now look forward to seeing them more and more over the coming weeks.
From Peter and Annefie. Swifts also came back again to around Locke Park Tower last week, just like the Barnsley Bird Atlas cover.
The usual bird suspects in our garden were joined this week for the first time by a Nuthatch. We could hear it tapping away at a decaying branch of our willow tree. Fun to watch its antics as it went up and down.