Sunday, July 28, 2013

High Altitude Nocturnal Emperor

A great record received from Steve Vaughan:

"I thought you might be interested in this sighting and photo which I took last night (27th July). I was looking over the moths attracted to the lights at the window around 10.30pm and noticed a large Nymphalid butterfly roosting on the window ledge. After some effort I took the attached photo of a rather fine Purple Emperor. Despite several efforts I couldn't get a good view of the upper surface of the wings, but the butterfly was clearly alive and had flown off by the morning. We live right on top of Blackdown (grid ref SU920310), altitude 238m, mixed broad-leaved woodland with oaks, sweet chestnut and the odd willow. Heathland nearby, but we are definitely in the woods. Although we have Silver-washed Fritillaries here every year (on the wing for a week or so now) I have never seen a Purple Emperor here. The nearest site I know of is Ebernoe woods, which must be 5 miles away at least. I don't
know of any sightings around Blackdown, never mind on the top - do you?"

Congratulations Steve. 780' (238m) amsl beats my own record for Sussex, set at Heyshott Down in 2009 at an altitude of 745' amsl.

No comments: