Saturday, June 27, 2020

Purple Emperor shows itself in Whichford Wood, Warwickshire Friday 26th June

Whichford Wood is a SSSI between Shipton-on-Stour and Chipping Norton on the south-west tip of Warwickshire. I was going with my family for a walk there as it was central meeting up place for us. On arrival I parked (Grid Ref.  SP 29554 34334) waiting for the others to arrive and got a totally unexpected fly-by down the road by His Majesty. What a surprise a Purple Emperor gliding down a B road.
We headed into Whichford wood down the gated path and went almost due south along the track going up hill, not the one which turns right in front of the conifers.
Within 50 metres of the paths splitting a Purple Emperor was found already grounded happily probing away with his proboscis oblivious to us all gawking at it. This was 11 am and the temperature was around 27oC and clear sunny skies. In our family group I was the only one who had previously seen them so the family were suitably impressed.

We watched him for a while as he flashed his royal Purple to all who wanted to see. 

A wonderful and totally unexpected encounter.

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