Posts tagged with ‘butterflies’

Bird of the Year 2014: best performances in a supporting role

Happy New Year, everybody. Keen followers of the Bird of the Year Awards will notice a change in the categories this year. Butterflies and moths receive a disproportionate amount of my insecty attention, so I think it makes sense to split them out into their own category. Realistically, I could just split all invertebrates into […]

Bird of the Year 2013: best performances in a supporting role

Even later than usual, but I thought I should at least get the first post out in time for the Oscars. Best Plant I spent quite a lot of time last year looking at flowers and butterflies. The names alone are a joy: sainfoin, silverweed, sanicle, harebell, yellow rattle, round-headed rampion, devil’s bit scabious, horseshoe […]

Bird of the Year 2012: best performances in a supporting role

I guess I should post this before the end of January. Not a lot of outstanding sightings to report, though. Best Plant I was quite tickled to see some Marsh Mallow plants down in Kent. Because, yes, they are the original stuff that marshmallows were made from. Best Insect This Poplar Hawkmoth was a pleasing […]

Harry’s advent calendar of insects, day 9: Tarsoctenus papias

Just a pretty butterfly today. I don’t know anything about Tarsoctenus papias, really, except that it’s a species of skipper from south America. I found it while browsing the amazingly, intimidatingly comprehensive website Butterflies of America. The photo is © Kim Garwood.

Bird of the Year 2011: best performances in a supporting role

I’ve been rather laggardly about doing BOTY this year because I had such an underwhelming year for birds. But I thought I should keep up the tradition, and  as the end of January approaches I’d better get on with it. Best Plant I went on a jaunt to a quarry in Essex which has some […]

Provençal wildlife roundup

It was really a bit late in the year for the best of the wildlife; many of the classic Mediterranean birds — bee-eaters and what have you — were probably already in Africa, and there weren’t many flowers around. Although the oleander everywhere still looked spectacular. Not that it was a complete bust on the bird front. It was […]

A palate cleanser

OK, enough with the all the Murdoch-ery. Time for something a bit more wholesome. Summer isn’t a great time for birding; you can tell when summer is well and truly here because bird bloggers start posting pictures of moths. Moths are like birdwatcher methadone. So it seemed like a good time of year to check out […]

Birding again

The glorious summery weather is back, and I had a good day of birding today, just out of London. On the spring migrant front: masses of chiffchaffs and blackcaps, the odd willow warbler, a single swallow. Also treecreeper, nuthatch, buzzard and so on, but the bird of the day was bullfinch. To capture my immediate, […]

Bird of the Year 2010: best performances in a supporting role

2010 wasn’t a vintage wildlife year for me. I didn’t go anywhere exotic, or even spend much time outside the M25. My longest wildlife-watching trip was to the car park of B&Q in Folkestone. Despite that, I did manage to rack up some pretty good bird sightings, but it was pretty slim pickings for the […]

Bird of the Year 2009: best performances in a supporting role

Best Plant Provence in May was just a great place for flowers. I claimed on Twitter to have seen nine or ten species of orchid, although it’s entirely possibly I over-claimed, since there tend to be lots of very similar species, some of them are quite variable, and I didn’t have a book with me. […]

Butterfly update

Butterfly Conservation are holding an organised Painted Lady count this Saturday when they’re asking people to count passing butterflies for two hours and post their sightings online. I thought I’d do a little preliminary count of my own.

Ladies, stags and owls

Last week — last Thursday, I think? — I was walking along the road and saw a butterfly go past which I thought was maybe a Painted Lady. Not actually my first of the year, because I’d only recently returned from Provence where I saw *thousands* of ’em, but still quite pleasing because they’re a migrant […]

‘Butterflies of Britain and Ireland’ on the iPhone

My review of the iPhone app ‘Butterflies of Britain and Ireland’.

Some local insects

Earlier in the season, most of the damselflies were blue ones; now they’re all blue-tailed: This bit of south London is, slightly unexpectedly, a stronghold for the increasingly rare stag beetle. At this time of year you tend to see them flying overhead in the evening; but the weather has been so miserable that I […]

Butterflies

There’s a peacock butterfly flying around outside the front of the house this morning in pretty much exactly the same place it was yesterday. Buterflies tend to be used as the epitome of aimless, carefree wandering, so it might come as a surprise to a lot of people to know that they are often highly […]

bird of the year 2006: best performances in a supporting role

Best Plant All those rainforest plants were nice, and I enjoyed taking wildflower photos while I was in Spain. But, not least because it’s nice to pick a winner that I can actually identify, I’m going for the Galapagos Prickly Pear, Opuntia echios. On islands where there are giant tortoises and land iguanas, they’ve evolved […]