Thursday, July 16, 2015

Alice Holt - from Ashley Whitlock

saw up to (25) in Alice Holt Forest today Abbotts Wood Inclosure

Today I've spent the best part of 6 hours on tour around the rides and vistas of Abbotts Wood Inclosure and many of the Assembly Points.I didn't hold out much hope of seeing much as the sky was the colour of dishwater, with very few glimpses of sunshine. It as quite warm and humid, and for the fact that the 'Empress' is around now was really the fact that I saw up to (25) Purple Emperors throughout the day.I arrived at the small car-park triangle at 11:00 and almost immediately saw an Emperor heading North Sallow searching and this is what I saw all the way up to the main car-park , they were either Sallow searching in the big sallows at the edge of the rides or higher up Oak edging. One male was seen edging along some Pine trees, and in a smaller ride a Male came right down close to me and almost sat on my hat, but he didn't stay long enough, as he was more interested in the sallows nearby. I also saw two chasing each other down one of the main rides, one went one way when they split and another went over to another part of the ride. I also saw one Oak edging whilst having my lunch at the small car-park, so in all they were very widespread. A one of the Assembly Points there were three Emperors chasing at 1325, and one male was almost constantly on patrol, around his vista.I sat at this vista which is the one I took everybody to during the field trip a few weeks ago, and I watched for up to 30 odd minutes. At Alice Holt One there was just one Emperor circling his territory, but this site is now almost redundant because I have to stand on a Step-Ladder in order to see anything! Down at the other end of Abbotts Wood in a Assembly Point called Buckshot Hole there was nothing, this site has not been Emperored now for several years, which is a shame as its got great viewing. My first visit to Goose Green was slow when I arrived at 1425, but I saw one male on 'George's tree,named after an Emperor by MRO years ago. There was some blue sky now and the warmth got them started and there were two chasing soon over a Sweet Chestnut Tree, I think there may have been two sets of two, so in all there was up to five on site. There were many chases , over the main road and back, and this is how I've calculated 25 Purple Emperors today.

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