Wednesday 10 August 2022

Butterflies amongst the flowers

7th August 2022 - a walk along the Old Railway Cutting was a rather dry, dusty experience this week, but there were patches of bright colour, with the Wild Marjoram, Wild Basil and Common Knapweed coming nicely into flower.  These were proving to be something of an oasis for a number of butterflies, including many Gatekeeper, Common Blue, and the second brood of Holly Blue and Small Heath. Unusually, Small Copper and Brown Argus also put in an appearance - Andy M.

Much of the area was looking very dry, including these grasses

Wild Marjoram putting on a good show ...

... as were these Common Knapweed ...

... and Ragwort

Common Knapweed (aka Lesser Knapweed)

Old Man's Beard flowers

Wild Marjoram

Wild Basil

Lucerne (also called Alfalfa)

Male Common Blue

Male Common Blue

Male Common Blue - note the unbroken white border

Male Common Blue - paler than the female

A Holly Blue hiding in the shadows - note the pale blue, largely plain underside,
except for a few scattered black dots

Gatekeeper, with the its characteristic double white spot in the black 'eye' 
and the uneven row of white dots on the lower under wing

Small White

Small Copper - with its bright orange and black spot combo.

Brown Argus - could easily be mistaken for a female Common Blue,
but the clearly defined rows of bright orange spots along the 
whole edges of both upper and lower wings are characteristic.

Brown Argus

Brown Argus

Second brood Small Heath

Hornet Mimic Hoverfly on a Scabious flower

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The Aims of Abington Naturewatch

At their meeting on 9 April 2005 the members approved this revised version of the aims of Abington Naturewatch:

  • To monitor and record the wildlife (fauna & flora) within the borders of the Abingtons;
  • To encourage protection of our wildlife, maintain its quality and foster its diversity;
  • To promote awareness of the richness, potential and problems of the natural environment of the Abingtons;
  • To cooperate in improving access to the local natural environment for the benefit of all Abington villagers.

Pat Daunt, Founder

The organisation is informal and communication is by email if possible; members are notified of events from time to time. Contact details are maintained by a small "project team". There is currently no membership fee as costs are covered by voluntary contributions at events.

Members are encouraged to report notable sightings of flora and fauna within the Abingtons to the appropriate sector coordinator and an illustrated record is published annually.

A map of the area covered, with some features noted, is available here:>

For more information or to join, please contact David Farrant on (01223) 892871.

Contributions to our records should be sent to sector contacts or either of the above. Photographs may also be submitted to Andy Merryweather (