With the sun shining and the temperature still quite warm I had a trip over to East Blean Woods late afternoon in the hope of finding some butterflies to photograph and maybe a Heath Fritillary caterpillar or two in which to try some more macro shots. On arrival a few butterflies could be seen basking which included 1 Peacock and 1 Comma. Also seen around the area was my first Orange Tip, a fine male which allowed a few shots before it flew off out of sight and 1 Small White noted. With the temperature still warm I then had a look in the leaf litter for any caterpillars and thankfully in between getting bitten by wood ants I managed to find 3 Heath Fritillary Caterpillars, all barely 1 cm long. I set about trying to get some shots of them with the Sigma 150mm macro and with a number of shots taken, I was pleased with some of the results. Hopefully I seem to be moving in the right direction at last with this lens. With the naked eye the caterpillars just looked black with little detail on but with the macro lens the detail comes to life, these little wonders going unnoticed to most passing people. It won't be long until the adults will be flying but I will continue to visit to monitor the development of the caterpillars. I assume their relationship with the wood ants must be good for they were all around them but never bothered the caterpillars. I shall post some shots of the butterflies taken later in the week, today also seeing my first 2 Speckled Woods of the year at Bishopstone Glen near Reculver.
Heath Fritillary Caterpillar