Butterflies on the buddleia? In my dreams!

Last year was one of the poorest on record for many species of butterfly and 2017 may well be on course to be even worse.

Spring species this year were most disappointing locally with small tortoiseshells, peacocks and whites well down. Only brimstones and holly blues showed up well.

 In early June, there is a seasonal lull as spring species fade away and summer species have not yet appeared.

However, grassland butterflies including meadow browns, ringlets, skippers and marbled whites are now around in good numbers so hopefully blues and gatekeepers will follow shortly.

It will be interesting to see if the next brood of tortoiseshells, peacocks, red admirals(pictured) and whites that should be on the wing in July will show any improvement.

At  precisely 7a.m on 1st June, a painted lady flew fast into my garden. The sun shone out of a cloudless deep blue sky but the temperature barely reached 60 degrees . So, that could mean only one thing. The butterfly had flown overnight into Britain from N. Africa via the continent.

Could that individual be the forerunner of a migration such as occurred eight years ago when countless millions graced our gardens and countryside?

So far this has not happened but there is still time as the weather has been hot and humid.

So, perhaps later in the summer our buddleias might yet play host to a colourful array of species. Let us hope so.