The following is from Matthew - back in Fermyn
To the lexicon of Emperoring we can now add the term 'pine coning.' Today, in
Fermyn Woods at least 10 males were gathered in the stand of tall open pines
just past 'Poplar Corner' in Lady Wood Head. At one point I saw five in a
vista. They were busy searching the pine trees, inspecting brown cones as if
the cones might harbour females (the males of many Browns are attracted to brown
objects, notably the Mountain Ringlet, which has a fixation with cast bits of
Herdwick sheep wool). I haven't seen iris males 'pine coning' before, and have
only twice seen them using this pine stand, but on three occasions I've seen
pairs mating high up in pine trees whilst settled on cones.
All told I
saw at least 50 individuals, including five females, two of which were on the
ground. A few males are still coming down, but they are distinctly middle aged
now. I did see one male down who was maybe two days old.