Overcast, cool, and windy - not ideal conditions. Had to walk along the edge of a barley field to get to the quarry. A 100m stretch of hedgerow, overgrown with bramble, thistle, and stinging nettle, had at least 18 Small Tortoiseshells. Many were roosting in the barley, as were about 6 Meadow Browns. Resting in the hedgerow were a Large Red Damselfly and a female Common Darter. There was no dragonfly activity at all over the quarry’s water body. However, there were 20 Common Blue Damselflies resting in the long grass on site, including a couple of copulating pairs. 1 Emerald Damselfly was also resting in the grass. There were 2 other Small Tortoiseshells and I either disturbed or saw resting 17 Meadow Browns. An interesting area of damp grassland/heathland at the site was pretty quiet – I disturbed about 6 Meadow Browns and there was a single Six-spot Burnet Moth on the wing. Yesterday there were 2 Small Heaths and 3 Common Blues in the ‘butterfly grassland’ at the south of the Ardeer Quarry LNR, and 2 male Common Hawkers were patrolling the upper reaches of Stevenston Burn above Kerelaw.
(Photos: Small Tortoiseshell; Large Red Damselfly)