Monday, 23 September 2013

A Small Tortoiseshell - but not as we know it!

A Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly with a difference!

A normal Small Tortoiseshell butterfly
I came across this Small Tortoiseshell butterfly (top photo) the other day with very odd markings – you can see in the photos that it has large amounts of black along the top of its wings when compared to a “normal” Tortoiseshell below. I will try and find out how rare this actually is and report back – just because I haven’t seen the like before, doesn't mean it is frantically unusual!!
I am pleased to read that it has generally been an excellent summer for butterflies, with long warm sunny periods, resulting in lots of butterflies being recorded. I wrote on this blog back on the 30th March, that although the summer of 2012 was an awful year for most butterflies, it was probably not the disaster that the press would have us all believe – butterflies and many other insect species are renowned for boom and bust years. I do feel that we are far too quick to “sensationalise” reports on the countryside – we really should keep our powder dry, so that when we REALLY do have a problem, the public don’t just think – “here we go once more, probably wolf, wolf again”.
I repeat, as I did back in March that this piece is not a dig at the excellent organisation Butterfly Conservation, but more of an observation on our great British press, who only ever seem to create reports on the “astounding”, making even relatively ordinary reports look dramatic by carefully selecting certain lines and “sexing” them up into eye catching headlines.
Read more on this “butterfly summer” on the Butterfly Conservation website:


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