Saturday 31 July 2010

Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui)

Saw my first Painted Lady of the year today - flying through the garden at Lorgba.  It did not stay around though and the photo below was taken a few years ago on pink-clad rocks south of Saligo.

Painted Ladies do not survive the winter in northern Europe in any form, they cannot hibernate here as adults, chrysalids or larvae.  The entire European population migrates to Europe from Africa - but only one way - none return.  Once here they can have two broods - but the whole population dies off in the winter - to be replenished once again from the south the following year. 

Numbers vary considerably.  Recent years have been good on Islay.

1 comment:

  1. 2009 was an outstanding year, not just on Islay where hundreds were seen together - 10 together would be about the most ever before - but numbers in Britain were clearly in the millions!