Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Well Worth the 'Long' Walk!

With news of 3 Long tailed Blue butterflies being seen in the last couple of days at Kingsdown Leas, near Dover I was very eager to get down and see them. Not only is this a very rare butterfly in the country but I have never seen one myself. There have been a couple of others reported in Sussex so it looks likely that there have been a few around. With a few good butterflies already seen this year on my visits around including Swallowtail and 3 Purple Emperor this would simply be the icing on the cake and so with this in mind I arrived at Bockhill by the monument this morning at 9am. The sun was shining nicely and with good spirits I made my way down the coast noting Marbled White, Gatekeeper, Meadown Brown and a few 'Whites'. After 20 minutes of walking I arrived in the area and could see a couple of others looking which would hopefully make the job of finding a small butterfly a little easier. As seems to be the way at the moment, I had only just arrived when one of the observers shouted that he had one. I was soon watching the first of 3 Long tailed Blue today as it warmed up in the sunshine. Making sure I noted the features of the butterfly the camera was soon called into some serious action getting a number of pleasing images of this little stunner.

Male Long tailed Blue 

 Male Long tailed Blue

Male Long tailed Blue

It soon moved off at speed and was lost to view but after more searching we found a worn female and another male. I then spent the next two and a half hours watching and photographing them as they flew around and fed happily with the occasional pair spiraling very high into the air before returning back.

Male Long tailed Blue 

Male Long tailed Blue 

Female Long tailed Blue

A few other observers appeared with one seeing a fourth individual not too far away, I wonder how many there actually are on the south coast at the moment? There were a very good back up list of species seen as well including Chalkhill Blue, 1 Brimstone, 1 Clouded Yellow, 4 Small Copper, 4 Wall Brown and a few Common Blues. I shall post a few shots of some of the species in the next few days. With a few shots in the bag I said my goodbyes and made my way back to the car. I thought the Swallowtail would be the last good butterfly of the year but today really does as mentioned put the icing on the cake. What a little beauty!

Male Long tailed Blue 

 Male Long tailed Blue

Male Long tailed Blue

13 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Brian, they have not turned out too bad I think, still room for improvement though.

      Delete
  2. Well done Marc, another sucessful trip out. Keep riding that lucky streak !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the streak may have just used its last bit of luck. Been an excellent season.

      Delete
  3. What a great butterfly...superb set of photos Marc

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many thanks Jason, thanks for looking.

      Delete
  4. Never even heard of a Long tailed Blue Marc! Ive noted the features from your excellent images, and will expect one on my patch soon :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You may be waiting a little while for one of these I would imagine Warren.

      Delete
  5. Well done Marc. They just keep rolling in this Summer. Lovely images as ever.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Nice Marc, not seen one myself yet!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Marc ,
    Another species I haven't managed to see yet , well done .
    Looked yesterday where they have been found in the past , without any luck .

    ReplyDelete
  8. Beautiful images of a butterfly that I never heard of.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Stunning Marc. Just stunning. I've shared a link to your blog on South Foreland Lightouse Facebook page. I saw a scruffy male LTB today on Kingsdown Leas with a NT group led by Matthew Oates. I also found a good number of eggs. Mel

    ReplyDelete