Flowers and Butterflies

What a lovely time of year it is to walk the fields! Skylarks can often be heard overhead and flowers and butterflies are appearing. It is very noticeable that the three lower fields have fewer flowers growing in them. This is due to the fact that they were cultivated in the 1960s and 70s, well within living memory. Ploughing and cultivating has the effect of increasing fertility and encouraging grass growth. Under the new management regime a hay cut will be taken, the arisings going to bio fuel. There is so much dog excrement present that unfortunately the hay cannot be used as winter feed.

Pyramidal orchids and other flowers are starting to appear, for the best displays go upwards to the smaller fields. The more you look the more you’ll see.

Butterflies are also increasing with Marbled Whites emerging. This is a typical butterfly of chalk down land and is actually a brown with white markings to be exact. The caterpillars overwinter in the long grass and pupate in May and June.

They are a beautiful sight as they lazily fly between flowers. I was watching them the other day and hoped to photograph one, they only land for a short while and are off again!

There are also some Fritillaries present, probably Dark Greens.

If you have time, it’s worth just sitting quietly somewhere sunny and letting the butterflies come to you.

Pyramidal Orchids