Today a small group of us watched an Empress feeding from a weeping ash bud scar on the high point at Botany Bay. She returned to probe the tiny wound repeatedly over several hours, before spending a further lengthy period in a large, adjacent sallow. Although we didn't actually observe oviposition there was little doubt about what she was up to, repeatedly 'striking' the upper part of the tall crown. While we were watching her a male passed through rapidly - the only view I had of Him before leaving mid afternoon.
Second port of call was a wood near Billingshurst, which provided several fleeting glimpses of a male around a large oak near the entrance gate. I finished off at Southwater (Madgeland) Wood, where a single male was still active around the Trout Lane car park at 5.30 pm.