The earlier pictures were taken on my wee compact Canon ixus 970IS, which involved sneaking up on the butterflies. This can be very frustrating when they fly off, but very rewarding when they don't!

Since 2012 I have been using a Panasonic Lumix FZ150, which allows me to zoom in to the butterflies from a couple of metres away.

Saturday, 12 September 2020

Scotch Argus returns

I was really excited to find a Scotch Argus, Erebia aethiops, flying in our garden in August last year. This left me wondering if there is a colony somewhere close by, or if there has always been a small colony in our woodland. I watched it laying eggs in the grass and then didn't dare cut the grass in that area for the next 12 months!!

On 11th August this year, despite the weather, I spotted a Scotch Argus in exactly the same place. It was rather the worse for wear and looked as though it was at least a week old.

It was a female again, but I didn't see it laying eggs. It was still flying in the same area the following day.

Two days later I saw another Scotch Argus flying down near the wild flower meadow I am trying to develop.

I still haven't found the answer to my question of where these butterflies have come from. I had been hoping to explore likely habitats in the area this summer, but sadly good weather never coincided with my days off. I am aware of an old record in the next little valley a kilometre away and someone has told me that they are found about five kilometres from here, further up the valley. I hope I will be able to explore both of these areas next August.

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