Sunday, July 13, 2014

Knepp Emperors Still Performing

Today (13th July) Matthew and I led the last of the Knepp Wildland Safaris to see Purple Emperor this year. Despite being quite late in the season the butterflies put on a good show for us, with 21 individuals seen, including 4 females.

We later returned for an early evening walk in a different area, adding a further 9. One particularly violent male attacked 5 passerines in as many minutes, including both Blue and Long-tailed Tit. By 6 pm the main target was Purple Hairstreak and we watched a bundle of 4 get mixed up with a couple of clashing iris. Towards the end of the day we saw a chase of 4 males in a vista, which is good by any standards.

Numbers at Knepp are certainly down on last year, but 30 individuals on a late season afternoon confirm this site as being second only to Fermyn Woods.

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