Saturday, 4 July 2015

More About Migrants

Readers with an interest in butterflies might want to learn a little more about the painted lady we found yesterday.  There's a very good article, here, about their epic migration from North Africa as far as the Arctic Circle.  Amongst other things, it points out that their round-trip migration, of some 9,000 miles, is almost double the length of the far more 'famous' monarch butterfly in North America.

There are other insect migrants around at the moment.  This is the silver Y, a moth which, while it can  survive our winters, has its population 'topped up' by immigrants from the continent and, again, North Africa.  These, like the painted lady, can, in some years, arrive in huge numbers.

We've seen silver Ys before, but spotted this one after noticing how well the marsh fragrant orchids were doing his year, and then wondering about the purpose of their scent.  Well, now we know.

Not that the silver Y fed exclusively on fragrant orchids.  If anything, it seemed to prefer these rather faded ragged robins.

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