Saturday, August 16, 2014

Not a lot to report except...

Keith Noble has spotted a Small Blue butterfly (Cupido minimus) near Brecon:
"A worn female Small Blue, which, going by the Millennium Atlas, is the first Powys record."

This, I read, is our smallest resident butterfly with a wing span that can be a little as 16mm. Unfortunately this specimen may be a long way from it's sole larval food-plant, Kidney Vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria), which is only known to we botany recorders at a few sites on the limestone at the south of our county. It may be that we have a population of this, often coastal, plant nearer though - perhaps on a road verge site where seeding has been done and limestone used. However what I know about butterflies wouldn't fill a postage stamp in large print so let's hope this isn't the last sighting.
Kidney Vetch, Anthyllis vulneraria which I have only ever photographed in coastal locations such as The Burren in Ireland
Heaven for a Small Blue

We postponed the planned expedition to the Black Mountain this week due to poor weather and hope to make it there next week so I decided to walk the bridle way from Brecon to Y Gaer yesterday and got a lot of records - none spectacular. But sometimes a picture opportunity just presents itself in front of your camera as happened here while I was eating my lunch near Cradoc on the way back.
Hogweed or Efwr, Heracleum sphondylium

The camera was out of my bag to record this new viewpoint of the Beacons for me:

I'm also on the lookout on days like that for updates to common species where I feel I haven't yet got a really good picture so I tried to get one of plentiful Bittersweet here:
Bittersweet ir Elinog, Solanum dulcamara
Still not the picture I am seeking !
another in the same vein:
Meadowsweet or Erwain, Filipendula ulmaria
at least I have anthers covered now...

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