Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Experience the Great Outdoors. New Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars. Visit our online shop to find out more!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old Friday 26th May 2017, 19:03   #26
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jos Stratford View Post
Northern Chequered Skipper ...
Usually regular at a couple of my local sites but didn't see a single one last year?


A
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 14:26   #27
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
27-28 May. Clouds, Chequers and Pearls.

A hundred kilometres north of Vilnius, a roadside verge, 9.30 am, warm and sunny, clouds of butterflies active, clouds of Clouded Apollos! Had been looking for this species for a week and here they were, a synchronised emergence of a whole bunch of them, pristine individuals sailing across the grassy slope, more pumping life into their wings as they entered adulthood. Quite a magical sight indeed, a splendid start to an weekend! Estimated there were at least 45 Clouded Apollos at this single spot, enhanced by a Pale Clouded Yellow and growing numbers of both Sooty Copper and Small Heath. A few kilometres further, I found another four Clouded Apollos drifting along a riverbank, then explored a hillside to find my first Heath Fritillary of the year and five Wall Browns.

Target two, Chequered Skipper. Middle Lithuania, wet deciduous woodland. Located a sunny glade and set out to explore, within a kilometre bumping into two chequers of the 'wrong' sort – Northern Chequered Skippers, bright creamy-yellows on the wings. Fortunately the third chequer along this very same glade was an exquisite pockering of brown and cream, a classic Chequered Skipper. All too brief, I managed not a single photograph before it disappeared! No big problem, checking further glades, I located yet more, this single forest block finally producing a total of three Northern Chequered Skippers and five Chequered Skippers, one of the latter even perching on my finger for a while!

With success on my two main targets, I decided to cut across to a couple of sites in the Kaunas area for the remainder of the day – wispy high cloud quietened things down a tad, but not too much – in sunny spells, I added a whole bunch of species, not only my third dose of Clouded Apollos of the day, but also two more Chequered Skippers, my first Mazarine Blue of the year and my first Little Blue of the year.

Next day, with temperatures soaring to an impressive 28 C, it was the turn of some of my favourite meadows to impress. Meandered around with butterflies rising from all quarters – dozens of Sooty Coppers, a few Small Coppers, at least 15 Queen of Spain Fritillaries, one Weaver's Fritillary, several Pale Clouded Yellows, a couple of Eastern Bath Whites, a minimum of 45 Small Heaths. Best of all however, the pair of pearls – a number of Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries in the grassland, then the crowning glory, three Pearl-bordered Fritillaries at woodland edge. Not a species I see very often in Lithuania, these were welcome indeed. Also one Swallowtail and a good dozen or so other species.

Rounding off the weekend, I went for a squelch in a raised bog – low and behold, more Pearl-bordered Fritillaries, about eight present this time, plus a wholly rare species, Baltic Grayling. Second time to see this bog specialist within ten days, many were present here, a minimum of 45 in the small area of habitat that I explored. Also a last couple of Green Hairstreaks and one more Swallowtail.

And so ended my weekend - not bad at all, several very localised species under the belt and 33 species noted in all.


BALTIC YEAR LIST

35. Clouded Apollo
36. Little Blue
37. Mazarine Blue
38. Heath Fritillary
39. Pearl-bordered Fritillary
40. Wall Brown
41. Chequered Skipper

.
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 14:28   #28
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Clouded Apollos...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Clouded Apollo lt 1.jpg
Views:	9
Size:	92.7 KB
ID:	629224  Click image for larger version

Name:	Clouded Apollo lt 4.jpg
Views:	13
Size:	110.2 KB
ID:	629225  Click image for larger version

Name:	Clouded Apollo lt 2.jpg
Views:	10
Size:	81.2 KB
ID:	629226  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 14:29   #29
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Chequers of two sorts...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Chequered Skipper lt 2.jpg
Views:	10
Size:	94.3 KB
ID:	629227  Click image for larger version

Name:	Chequered Skipper lt 1.jpg
Views:	9
Size:	70.4 KB
ID:	629228  Click image for larger version

Name:	Northern Chequered Skipper lt 6.jpg
Views:	15
Size:	102.5 KB
ID:	629229  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 14:30   #30
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Pearls of two sorts ...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary lt 1.jpg
Views:	12
Size:	89.7 KB
ID:	629230  Click image for larger version

Name:	Pearl-bordered Fritillary lt 1.jpg
Views:	8
Size:	81.2 KB
ID:	629231  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 15:32   #31
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
I'm going to have to pay more attention this year. On my patch which comprises raised bog and swamps, I've noted a couple of butterflies that I've dismissed as Arran Browns, hadn't realised the similarity of the upper wing to Baltic Grayling.

Last edited by andyadcock : Friday 2nd June 2017 at 15:35.
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 17:44   #32
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Quote:
Originally Posted by andyadcock View Post
I've noted a couple of butterflies that I've dismissed as Arran Browns, hadn't realised the similarity of the upper wing to Baltic Grayling.
Maybe you are thinking of Scotch Argus and Arran Brown? These are similar butterflies, but Baltic Grayling is in reality not that similar - underwings are quite different and upperwing orange lacks the brightness of Arran Brown. However, if you saw the upper wing, most likely they were not Baltic Graylings - they almost always keep their wings closed when landed.

Additionally, flight times should separate them - even further north, Baltic Grayling is an early season species (May-early June), while Arran Brown is late season (mid-July–mid-August).
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website

Last edited by Jos Stratford : Friday 2nd June 2017 at 18:31.
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 18:05   #33
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
29 May. Neris Valley.

Two more additions to the year list – in the Neris Valley, one Knapweed Fritillary and a couple of first generation Brown Argus. Localised species both, these are good butterflies to locate, especially the fritillary, something I see at best only once or twice a year.

Also, amongst 20 species, increasing numbers of Heath Fritillaries, continuing Pale Clouded Yellows, one Mazarine Blue and no less than eight Little Blues.



BALTIC YEAR LIST

42. Knapweed Fritillary
43. Brown Argus
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Brown Argus lt 1.jpg
Views:	12
Size:	59.1 KB
ID:	629274  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 19:19   #34
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jos Stratford View Post
Maybe you are thinking of Scotch Argus and Arran Brown? These are similar butterflies, but Baltic Grayling is in reality not that similar - underwings are quite different and upperwing orange lacks the brightness of Arran Brown. However, if you saw the upper wing, most likely they were not Baltic Graylings - they almost always keep their wings closed when landed.

Additionally, flight times should separate them - even further north, Baltic Grayling is an early season species (May-early June), while Arran Brown is late season (mid-July–mid-August).
The insects I saw were flying and landede very briefly. From what I can see in the book, the main difference in the upperwing is the black spots which are not white centred in the Grayling. Habitat is bang on, no reason it shouldn't be here?

Been in the UK fo a couple of weeks but back to St P tomorrow where it's still horrible weather wise, just 11c and very windy, very few butterflies to be had at all yet.

As I said, I must try harder this year to find new habitat but it isn't easy.


A
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 2nd June 2017, 23:13   #35
RafaelMatias
Registered User
 
RafaelMatias's Avatar

 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Posts: 1,046
Excellent thread as usual, with some amazing species there: the Violet Copper and the Northern Chequered Skipper are my favourites. I look forward to read the next installments.
My annual list in Portugal is currently on 60 species, but I'm sure this year won't be a record breaker (managed 102 last year and 122 in 2015, a butterfly "big year" for me).
__________________
Rafael

http://www.flickr.com/photos/18665593@N00/
RafaelMatias is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 4th June 2017, 17:35   #36
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Quote:
Originally Posted by RafaelMatias View Post
Excellent thread as usual, with some amazing species there: the Violet Copper and the Northern Chequered Skipper are my favourites. I look forward to read the next installments.
Many thanks, next installment to follow. It's been an excellent first few days in June - after concentrating on two species over the last few weeks that I had previously not found in Lithuania, finally got both this weekend. One was new for me in Lithuania, the other was my first in all the Baltic states (or to be more accurate, first to 65th!).
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Wednesday 7th June 2017, 18:45   #37
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
New Butterflies. 1-3 June.

Quite some time I have been searching for two particular species in Lithuania, both being rather scarce and localised. Needless to say, to find both within a couple of days of each other was very pleasing!

Both in the country's Red Data Book, the species in question were Marsh Fritillary and Green-underside Blue, the first a rare occupant of scattered wetlands, the second a species mostly restricted to grassland edges in south Lithuania. I had seen neither in the country, though I had seen Marsh Fritillary in Latvia in 2016.
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Wednesday 7th June 2017, 18:48   #38
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Marsh Fritlliary.

A small marsh in eastern Lithuania, barely a few hundred metres across, this little wetland is a place I have visited several times this season. Not only special for Violet Coppers, two seen on this visit, but also for a number of other interesting butterflies all due to fly in the coming days. Today's highlight was Marsh Fritillaries, at least 15 active, mostly in a damp area of transition habitat. Splendid butterflies indeed!

The same general area should also support Bog Fritillary and both Large and Scarce Heaths ...failed to find any however, probably still some days too early. Other butterflies present though did include an early Red Admiral, a Northern Chequered Skipper, several Speckled Woods and, in meadows nearby, Short-tailed Blue, a late Holly Blue and Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Marsh Fritillary lt 2.jpg
Views:	6
Size:	72.7 KB
ID:	629797  Click image for larger version

Name:	Marsh Fritillary lt 3.jpg
Views:	5
Size:	73.2 KB
ID:	629798  Click image for larger version

Name:	Marsh Fritillary lt 4.jpg
Views:	5
Size:	60.0 KB
ID:	629799  Click image for larger version

Name:	Marsh Fritillary lt 5.jpg
Views:	7
Size:	104.3 KB
ID:	629800  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Wednesday 7th June 2017, 18:51   #39
Jos Stratford
Back again...
 
Jos Stratford's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Exile in East Europe
Posts: 14,905
Green-underside Blue.

A chilly 10 C early on, the bright sun doing little to warm the day. Checked several areas in the Marcinkonys area from 9.00 am, but even an hour later than this the temperature had only risen a couple of degrees, quite a breeze not helping either! Predictably relatively few butterflies in the conditions, but sheltered patches did harbour a healthy number of Brown Arguses (at least 15), plus a couple of Grizzled Skippers. A few Common Blues on the wing, plus one Little Blue, but certainly no Green-underside Blues.

Checked another possible site a little later, failed again, the main rewards here being Swallowtail and Queen of Spain Fritillary. Next stop Cepkaliai – idea was to look for Bog Fritillary, another zero show, perhaps still a few days early. Did find a couple of Baltic Graylings though, plus four Pearl-bordered Fritillaries and one Chequered Skipper.

Deciding I was not going to find Green-underside Blue, I gave up on the pine forests and associated meadow and headed to a favoured area right in the far south of the country. Turned out to be a good move, there were stacks of butterflies, starting with a Glanville Fritillary active in flower meadows, always a very good species to find. However, what I was not ready for was what I found next - wandering along a sunny track, forest to one side, meadow to the other, quite a number of blues were flitting around. Some clearly Common Blues, but then some 'different' ones caught my eye ...and as soon as one landed, my eyes were feasting on no less than a Green-underside Blue! And then there were more! And more! The entire forest edge was full of them, dozens and dozens attending flowers - in a mere 750 metre stretch, I estimated a minimum of 65 present, almost all males.

Quite stunning, I had been hoping to perhaps find two or three if I was lucky, but now I had whole flocks of them! Enquiries suggest these numbers are highly unusual for Lithuania, sites generally holding less than five! So, rounding the day off at another site, adding Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries amongst others, I returned home most content, 26 species seen, a few real crackers amongst them.


BALTIC YEAR LIST

44. Marsh Fritillary
45. Glanville Fritillary
46. Green-underside Blue
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Green-underside Blue lt 1.jpg
Views:	17
Size:	80.7 KB
ID:	629803  Click image for larger version

Name:	Green-underside Blue lt 2.jpg
Views:	13
Size:	70.1 KB
ID:	629807  
__________________
For photographs and articles, Lithuania and beyond, click here for my website

Last edited by Jos Stratford : Wednesday 7th June 2017 at 19:47.
Jos Stratford is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2007 2009 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Thursday 8th June 2017, 11:49   #40
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
Amazing diversity there, I haven't seen a single Blue of any species here yet.


A
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 18th June 2017, 20:03   #41
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
What's happening there now Jos?

Awful here, (well North of Jos but still in the Baltic region) still not a single Blue of any species and Black-veined Whites are absent, a full three weeks later than last year. Perhaps it was last years extremely wet summer that's the problem, if breeding was affected I guess we'd see the results of that this year?


A

Last edited by andyadcock : Monday 19th June 2017 at 07:42.
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Sunday 18th June 2017, 23:05   #42
RafaelMatias
Registered User
 
RafaelMatias's Avatar

 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Posts: 1,046
Around here in Portugal we're having extremely hot and dry weather right now. Spent last week in the field, in northern Portugal, bringing my annual total to 89 species. In a single day, at a single locality (about 3 km of riverine forest) I managed to record 43 species, while 10 more were available 5 km to the north. Diversity has reached (nearly) its annual peak around here.
__________________
Rafael

http://www.flickr.com/photos/18665593@N00/
RafaelMatias is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 19th June 2017, 07:43   #43
andyadcock
Registered User

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Nottingham UK and St Petersburg, Russia
Posts: 6,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by RafaelMatias View Post
Around here in Portugal we're having extremely hot and dry weather right now. Spent last week in the field, in northern Portugal, bringing my annual total to 89 species. In a single day, at a single locality (about 3 km of riverine forest) I managed to record 43 species, while 10 more were available 5 km to the north. Diversity has reached (nearly) its annual peak around here.
My species total stands at about 10!

Not hijacking your thread here, just curious what's happening there as you haven't posted for a while? Amazing what a difference of 5-600km makes to diversity and the weather.


A

Last edited by andyadcock : Monday 19th June 2017 at 07:45.
andyadcock is online now  
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
First butterfly in 2017 Sandy73 Butterflies and Moths 42 Monday 17th April 2017 20:43
Baltic Butterfly Challenge, 2016 Jos Stratford Butterflies and Moths 72 Monday 31st October 2016 19:20
Jos's Baltic Mammal Challenge 2015 Jos Stratford Mammals 113 Saturday 10th October 2015 17:50
Butterfly challenge WillowB Butterflies and Moths 0 Monday 27th September 2010 22:12
Butterfly ID challenge from dreadful photo!! ivewalmer Butterflies and Moths 10 Monday 22nd September 2003 21:11



Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.20176506 seconds with 31 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 14:02.