This morning I had an appointment to see the rheumatologist, and R very sweetly offered to drive me to town and buy me cake as a reward afterwards. My relationship with Dr M hasn’t always been either easy or cooperative (on either side), but today we got along like a house on fire, and I skipped out of the hospital after a brief and pleasant chat, with a smiley face sticker and a lollipop. All I have to do is stay healthy, and we’ll be on Christmas card terms before long.
Over coffee and cake I realised to my annoyance that I’d brought the wrong camera/lens combination out with me, and as I knew already from my attempts to record dragonflies yesterday what a good job the 24-70 doesn’t do of shooting insects, it was clear that there wasn’t any point taking it down to the river with a view to hunting dragons and damsels. So back at home I collected the macro and walked up the baking lane to Tilly’s field, in the hope of finding a butterfly.
I actually let out a small whoop of pleasure when I walked through the gate and immediately spotted two Common Blues. This is the field which had first-brood CB adults last year, but which was then cut short in early July, and didn’t produce another butterfly for the rest of the season; it seemed clear that any larvae that hadn’t already pupated would have died during the mowing, and the absence of a second brood of Common Blues made me fear that they were now lost to this site – but almost a year later, here were a single newly-emerged male and female.
There are now a number of Meadow Browns in this field too, and I’m waiting to see whether any Ringlets or Marbled Whites emerge, because they were also present in good numbers at the point last summer when it was – well, devastated was the word I used at the time, and I still feel much the same. The grass is already very long, and I fully expect that it will be cut again quite soon for winter fodder – so anything that feels like breeding here had better crack on and do it as soon as possible. I mentioned this to this female Common Blue, but she was a bit stand-offish, and I didn’t get the feeling that she was listening to me.
If you’re interested, I finished processing my photos from the osprey session this morning, and I’ve put a post about Blue 28 here.