Pearl-borderedFritillary-JimAsher-200pxPearl-bordered Fritillary butterfly. Photo: Jim Asher
DPA volunteers started work on this project on 19th Nov 2012 in bad weather, there were no photographs and no report on the DPA blog! The project is butterfly conservation at Common Wood, “near Horndon”.

This is an isolated woodland with scrub extending up the valley sides of the River Tavy and it is here, under favourable conditions, that the declining Pearl-bordered Fritillary can breed.

Volunteers returned to survey the site on two occasions recently (June 2014), on the first visit they counted nine Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries in the allotted hour, and, on the second visit they recorded a staggering twenty-two. It is possible that some were repeat sightings but this indicates a substantial underlying population.

DPA volunteers started work on this project on 19th Nov 2012 in bad weather, there were no photographs and no report on the DPA blog! The project is butterfly conservation at Common Wood, “near Horndon”. This is an isolated woodland with scrub extending up the valley sides of the River Tavy and it is here, under favourable conditions, that the declining Pearl-bordered Fritillary can breed. Volunteers returned to survey the site on two occasions recently (June 2014), on the first visit they counted nine Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries in the allotted hour, and, on the second visit they recorded a staggering twenty-two. It is possible that some were repeat sightings but this indicates a substantial underlying population.

Pearl-borderedFritillary-JimAsher-300pxPearl-bordered Fritillary. Photo: Jim Asher

DPA volunteers started work in quite bad weather, there were no photographs and no report on the DPA blog! The project is butterfly conservation at Common Wood, “near Horndon”.

The weather was better when the volunteers returned on 12th February 2013 and from these efforts a blog report was written: Butterfly Conservation at Common Wood.

Small Pearl-bordered 300px-Frit-JimAsherSmall Pearl-bordered Fritillary. Photo: Jim Asher

Under the expert guidance of Jenny Plackett, from Butterfly Conservation  we started making clearings in the gorse and cutting flight paths so that the butterflies might travel from one area to another without being too exposed to high winds. The aim was to encourage the growth of bracken (not normally a DPA activity!) and the violets that the fritillary caterpillars feed on.

We returned again on 1st June 2013 with much better weather and this resulted in another DPA blog article Butterfly conservation – DPA volunteers involved again. The work went well.

The photograph below shows the good weather enjoyed by the work party on 1st June 2013 as they were instructed about conducting the butterfly survey and how to recognise the different species – close-focussing binoculars are very useful for this!

CommonWoodScene-500pixelsDPA volunteers being instructed in butterfly surveying and recognition.