Bird's Eye View of Bute

The Meadow Brown

(1) Meadow Brown
(1) Meadow Brown
(2) Meadow Brown ( Bedragled)
(2) Meadow Brown ( Bedragled)
(3) Meadow Brown with Ringlet
(3) Meadow Brown with Ringlet

 

Meadow Brown Butterfly.


This Butterfly has been a thorn in my flesh for a few years. Normally when it lands , it’s wings are open, making identification easy, but sometimes when they see me coming , they close them and look like an entirely difference species, and I get caught out every year, as when a new season starts, I have forgotten what lessons that I had in previous years, so falling in to the same trap also means that in chasing these miscreants I often hit the dirt, rocks, burns, trees, bushes, in trying to catch them thinking that they are another species, the Large Heath.


This one always lands with its wings closed, and unfortunately it has never been seen on Bute, so that is what I have been trying to correct with getting an image of it, with disastrous results.
Shins skint, falling into bramble bushes or tall bracken , scratching my arms, and when I end up horizontal, my hand and face get it.
To let you understand. The Meadow Brown has a wing span of 50 mm. The Large Heath 38 mm, and to make matters worse the Small Heath 30mm. The small one is no problem, and in the season they are thick on the ground and air, but the Large Heath is only 8.mm bigger which is not very much, and are very alike. The use of the word “large”would seem to tell you that it is indeed large , but in this case it is only telling you that there is a smaller version. At a distance both the Heath's and the Meadow Brown, with wings closed, would difficult to differentiate from each other, and getting closer disturbs all species , so that is how I go stumbling around in the hope that maybe one of them is the one that I want. Not yet, but there is always next year.
The Meadow Brown In this weeks article was found on the roadside at Quochag Farm, (Bute Golf Course) and it possibly been hit by a car , or caught on the back draft and hit the ground hard. It seemed to be barely alive , but I put it on a plant and it seemed to recover slowly and enabled me to get a fine image of it. I waited for a while in case it recovered and flew back onto the road, but it seemed to have learned its lesson and flew of in the opposite direction, so that was another couple of “Brownie “ points for me. I really get a kick when this happens to me .. The right time at the right place, and if I can help then I will, but sometimes I have to put Butterflies etc that are too badly injured to sleep.
This would seem to be “A day with Norrie on the Wildllfe on Bute”. It lets you know what goes on in our Island each year , but as I have said before the more I write about, then there will be less to write about as finding and photographing new species is getting harded and harder , but no doubt I will be able to find more for a while yet, If not, will I hang up my pen?


Norrie Mulholland.


First published in the Buteman . 27-12-2013.

 

 


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