Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Butterflies are back….

Up till Sunday morning, I, along with most of the nature loving population of the UK wondered where all the butterflies had gone this year. The buddleia plants in our garden are traditional butterfly food beacons, which in previous years has been choc-a-block full with vibrant lepidoptera of all colours, shapes and hues. At the moment, the plants are festooned full of magnificent aromatic blooms – but they look a bit like decorated Christmas trees without the fairy lights. The glittering twinklings of Peacock and Painted Lady wings have just not been present this year.

A bit of a shock then when I strolled out on the OK sod on this last bright, warm Sunday morning.

They’re back. Hundreds of them.
Correction, thousands of them.
Painted Ladies, Red Admirals, Large Whites, Brimstones, Peacocks, Brown Skippers, Commas, Common Blues…..

The air was full to bursting, fluttering here and there. The great conical flowers of the buddleia were sagging under the weight of bunteresque butterflies feeding for all they were worth.

They looked like multi-coloured kites pulled by invisible pixies with invisible strings. It lifted my spirits, Ralph Vaughan Williams and his fluttery lark ascending music came into my head…. My little piece of England was whole again.

I was puzzled though. If they’re all here today, then where were they yesterday and the day before that?

9 comments:

Snowbabies said...

We've hardly seen any butterflies all summer up until the last week or so in our garden, mostly cabbage whites but at least they are making an appearance now :-)

Valerie said...

I'm glad they've showed up. blogger Birdman at Raised by Chaffinches was noting the dearth of insects, and it's something that bugs me, too.

I was pleased, after a lovely surprise deluge here (we're in a drought), to hear squeaking, peeping and cheeping from the fields.

wonkotsane said...

I think I have the answer.

The EU Butterfly and Moth (Restriction of Movement) Regulations 2005, Section 6, Paragraph 5, Sub-Paragraph 2 says:

Butterfly's are permitted to fly during the months of August and September provided that

a. They have received appropriate permission from a competent authority

b. They have not exceeded a distance of 10 miles or a flying time of 6 hours

c. They have a valid Aphid Consumption exemption certificate

Mike Cunningham said...

So now we have to cope with intelligent bloody butterflies! Is there no end to the perfidy of the insect kingdom! First there was that piece of news that cockroaches haven't changed since umpty-ump million years ago; you'd think someone would have told them about the cockroach equivalent of body-odour by now; and then there was that piece about how some beetle was totally immune to atom bomb attacks; which is worse; and now we have an invasion of butterflies all reading the latest Harry Potter, upgrading to the latest EU Regulations, and demanding more flight time before libraries close in the evening!

I'm seriously thinking of emigration, but the bloody foxes are probably moving there first!

Elspeth said...

that one thing i miss - my Buddulah it was pretty big by the time I left my garden in the UK

Roger B. said...

Buddulah?

Ah yes, I believe he Dalai Lama has one.

;-)

There's no shortage of butterflies on our side of the Pennines. Several new species have moved into the area over the past few years, probably due to climate change.

Birdman said...

They looked like multi-coloured kites pulled by invisible pixies with invisible strings.


Alfie. I think you should join me in my self-imposed temporary spell of abstinence.

galetea said...

I think they were all vacationing in our house. I can't tell you how many of the little buggers I've caught and put outside this year!

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