We haven’t seen many butterflies this year. Even on sunny days we’ve not seen more than half a dozen and I’ve been starting to worry that we were in for a disastrous year.
However, things took a turn for the better today when Julia came back from the lavender patch with reports of 16 Small Tortoiseshell as the headline figure. I had to have a look for myself and found the butterflies dotted about all over the lavender like rubies on velvet. Of course, I exaggerate, they were more like orangey things on purple shrubs, but for a moment I felt in the mood for a simile. Butterflies and sunshine can have this effect on a man.
On a more prosaic level, it gave me a chance to compare new camera with old one (I think the old one won) and several exciting times as I thought I saw new species.
The possible Ringlet turned out just to be a very brown meadow brown but the skipper gave me my first photograph of a Large Skipper. It took me over 20 minutes to identify it when I got the pictures back to the computer, but the pointed antennae (from a picture taken by the old camera) finally solved it for me.
It’s a bit like children – they all look the same to me. Unlike children, of course, I can take lots of photographs without incurring any suspicion.