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News Archive for Dec 2021

30 Dec 2021

Harewood Common - Brown Hairstreak eggs. Despite grey drizzly weather, an afternoon visit to Harewood Common, east of Andover, proved successful. After a bit of searching, Linda and I found two Brown Hairstreak eggs on young blackthorn at this Test Valley Borough Council site. The eggs were located along the fence-line of a young tree and shrub belt marking the edge of the site (see image below). It just goes to show the value of new hedgerows and tree belts as suitable habitat for rare butterflies such as the Brown Hairstreak. This butterfly has extended its range in Hampshire quite a bit over the last 5 years, so it's well worth doing a winter egg-search if you have young suckering blackthorn growth near where you live. The pin-head sized white eggs are typically located at the junction of small stems of the youngest growth (see photos). [Posted by Andy Barker]

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Harewood Common - tree and shrub edge
Photo © Andy Barker
Brown Hairstreak - egg 1
Photo © Andy Barker
Brown Hairstreak - egg 2
Photo © Andy Barker

26 Dec 2021

Winter Moth. You're unlikely to see many butterflies at this time of year, apart perhaps, from a Red Admiral, nectaring on a sunny winter's day, but it's well worth keeping an eye out for moths. One of the commonest is the Winter Moth, and the one pictured below was attracted to light and settled on our patio door early on Boxing Day evening. With mild weather forecast over the coming days, have a look for any moths that may be attracted to your porch light or windows. [Posted by Andy Barker]

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Winter Moth
Photo © Andy Barker