Allerthorpe Common – 04/05/13

Paid a visit to this Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Reserve with the hope of photographing some Adders Vipera berus. Unfortunately the strong wind, and cloudy skies, prevented them from coming out to bask in the sun. I did manage to see three individuals, but all were views of them disappearing into cover. Another species of reptile was also observed, Common Lizard Lacerta vivipara, though again they were only seen as they scuttled for cover.

On a good note, I found my first odonata of the year, with four Large Red Damselflies Pyrrhosoma nymphula present. They were however all very flighty, not hanging around long enough to have their photos taken.

On the heath there were good numbers of the Hoverfly Eristalis intricarius, giving an opportunity to see several of them in their variable colour forms.

Hoverfly - Eristalis intricarius

Hoverfly – Eristalis intricarius

Finally, three butterfly species were observed; Brimstone Gonepteryx rhamni, Peacock Inachis io and Green-veined White Pieris napi. The Brimstones G. rhamni showed really well, with two males sparring. Both settled with one giving several different opportunities to photograph it. This is usually the hardest time of the year to photograph them as they are normally very active, more concerned with reproducing than feeding.

Brimstone - Gonepteryx rhamni

Brimstone – Gonepteryx rhamni