There it was gone. Is that an expression local to North Derbyshire? Something that appears briefly and then disappears…
The blue skies and warm sun have gone and we are now expecting storm Freya to arrive on Sunday. Whilst it was very enjoyable, in a world of shifting weather patterns, it was also a little disconcerting for a few days in February to be so mild, this time last year we had the Beast from the East
But before the cloud came we had more visitors to the pussy willow, a comma butterfly
Who had a very neat vanishing trick up its sleeve. Now you see me, now you don’t.
The Comma is a fascinating butterfly. The scalloped edges and cryptic colouring of the wings conceal hibernating adults amongst dead leaves, while the larvae, flecked with brown and white markings, bear close resemblance to bird droppings.
The species has a flexible life cycle, which allows it to capitalize on favourable weather conditions. However, the most remarkable feature of the Comma has been its severe decline in the twentieth century and subsequent comeback. It is now widespread in southern Britain and its range is expanding northwards.
I might be a bit slow on the uptake, but it wasn’t until recently I realised that some butterflies over winter, I assumed that they emerged from their chrysalis in the spring.
Wrong, this is how the comma butterfly spends its year
We’ve been busy bees, having a serious clear out of our barn,
well its actually turned into a kind of archaeological dig, so much stuff! It was during this process, we found lots of hibernating butterfly tucked away behind old cupboards and pieces of timber, sadly I also found a lot of dismembered wings! I suppose a spider needs to eat.