Friday, June 22, 2012

Delayed Start

My 7 captive larvae were well in tune with their wild cousins in N Wilts.  All have now pupated, the last individual midweek.  I believe that the butterfly wont emerge in N Wilts before 6th July at the very earliest, and then only if the onset of Wimbledon fortnight brings a massive anticyclone (which seems most unlikely).  However, some individuals may have pupated considerably earlier in the warmer climes of West Sussex and Surrey, during the nine day hot spell at the end of May - in which case a few adults may appear there at the end of June.  Generally, the butterfly may not emerge before 10th July - later if this cool, wet and utterly foul & abusive weather continues.  It can get stuck for four weeks in the pupal stage if the weather is cool and wet.  We may even have a repeat of the dreadful 1977 season, when the Queen's Silver Jubilee June rains and a poor July ensured that the butterfly didn't begin to emerge before the fourth week of July, and lasted into September!  The prospects for the 2012 iris season were never good, and are deteriorating...

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