Butterflies and Bees

This sunny summer weather is perfect for butterflies, bees and other insects. A variety of species are active in the nature reserve at the moment. Some can easily be seen by checking out the flowers that are in bloom. For instance the yellow daisy-like flowers of ragwort are magnets for lots of insects. You may be lucky enough to see a Small Copper, the jewel-liked butterfly that is the Friends of The Heath emblem.

Others prefer the purple flowers of knapweed.

But not all butterflies need flowers. The elusive Purple Hairstreak feeds on greenfly honeydew found on leaves high up in oak trees. I have been pleased to see them in the nature reserve in large numbers this week. The trick is to stand and patiently stare up at the canopy. Eventually you should see a flurry of little silvery butterflies fluttering between the oak leaves.

Purple Hairstreak in Oak Canopy

Purple Hairstreak

Take the time to stand and stare next time you visit The Heath. You will be well rewarded.

Kevin Griffiths

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