Last weekend I visited the Eifel together with the Jordan brothers. The accommodation was booked in January so we decided to face the elements of a rainy and stormy weekend! On our way to the accommodation we visited an old location but we couldn't find much butterflies there. On a second location Gerard and Frank stayed wisely in the car; I went out searching butterflies but it was getting darker and darker.....partly drenched I returned to the car. We drove to a third location which we discoverd last year and after the rain stopped we tried again to find butterflies. Last year we visited this 'new' area one week earlier and we did not find much butterflies.
This year was different! On the big meadow I found a fresh Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary and I was happy with the first butterfly at all. Some later Gerard found in a very small bog meadow surrounded by the forest a lot of Bog Fritillaries and some Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries....as the sky was getting darker again we decided after some photos to leave for dinner and to return the next morning.
On Saturday morning we had some moments with less wind but it was still a challenge to get sharp photos and within one hour the heavy wind returned. After breakfast we visited some other meadows and area's and at the moment I started photographing this Large Skipper the sun arrived and he flew away.
Sunday morning we visited a large area and very soon Gerard found a fresh Purple-edged Copper and when I photographed this butterfly a soft sun arrived and for some minutes the light was fantastic. Unfortunately it started raining again and the biting midges became very active but I will not complain as we found some beautiful fresh butterflies in this area!
The only thing that I missed was our favorite 'Kaffee & Kuchen' place which was closed due to the corona rules.
Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary
By coincidence my yesterdays appointment was cancelled so together with the same friend I returned to the butterfly paradise in Belgium which I mentioned in my former blog.
At arrival we found some resting butterflies; for camouflage they prefer brown stalks or flower buds.
In a week time nature can change significant! Instead of 50 Small Pearl-bordered fritillaries, I found 50 Wasp Spiders and the reason why only 20 fritillaries were left. Also most of the flowers were wilted or in the proces of getting brown. Next to the Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries also some Queen of Spain Fritillaries were left:
After a while we had to give up as the wind was too strong. I'm really looking forward to visit this place again in 2014 and to search for the first generation of the Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary!
The curse of the orange pearl!
Last Saturday, together with a friend, I travelled to the High Fens in Belgium with the purpose to photograph the Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary. We arrived before sunrise and with a beautiful red sun in mind we started our tour. It was very windy and the temperature was not really pleasant but the worst thing were hundreds of tiny little biting flies and the fact that we couldn’t find one single fritillary.
Although not much hope was left, we decided to drive to the second spot in Belgium. It was not easy to find but as soon as we entered the area a flying Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary welcomed us.
We were arrived in butterfly paradise! The sun was shining and orange butterflies everywhere. After a while I discovered a path in the brambles and on the other side again a small area appeared with a lot of flowering yellow violets (larval foodplants of the fritillaries) and other rare flowers. The sun disappeared behind the clouds and for hours it was perfect weather as the butterflies became lazy or started resting on a flowers without moving.
Normally it is not easy to find a butterfly on a perfect location, not that day. Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries everywhere!
We counted at least 50 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries, some Queen of Spain Fritillaries and a lot of other butterfly species like Marbled White, Clouded Yellow, Common Blue, Chalk-hill Blue, Small Tortoiseshell, Small Heath and Small Copper. Also some snakes, foxes and beautiful birds are living there.
It was really a gift being there and I can't wait to visit this area again!
Jibt dir dit Leben mal een Buff, denn weene keene Träne. Lach Dir'n Ast und setz Dir druff und baumle mit de Beene.