A quick hello as the 2015 Large Blue Ranger!

Hi Butterfly enthusiasts and nature lovers!

My name is Rosie, I would like to introduce myself as the 2015 Large Blue Volunteer Ranger. I arrived in Somerset from the University of Reading, having just finished my undergraduate degree in Human and Physical Geography, I am excited to build on my conservation skills with such a fantastic organisation. My Geography degree offered me skills from Human and Physical Geography as well as Environmental Science, which has allowed me flexibility in the areas I chose to study.

I spent the last year working on my wonderfully long dissertation of colonising Butterflies, Dragonflies, Damselflies and Ground Beetles of a site in Oxfordshire known as the “River of Life Project”. This sparked an interest into ecology and I am hoping this opportunity with the National Trust will give me a strong basis to begin my Masters in Species Identification and Survey skills next year. It has been an amazing 3 years at University and I am excited to get started on this incredible Project following the story of the Large Blue butterfly and the variety of other creepy crawlies and wildlife I will come across during my time in lovely Somerset.

I would like to be a friendly face and point of call to those of you who will make the journey to Collard Hill, alongside me there will be group of fantastic National Trust Volunteers of whom some will be familiar faces alongside some very welcome new volunteers. My role consists of monitoring the population using a pre designed transect route, that I am sure many of you have walked before, as well as this I will be happy to talk to and aid any of you welcome visitors around the beautiful site.

I will be updating the post regularly to ensure the latest information on the Large Blue’s emergence is relayed to you. I shall also be posting anything of interest that I find or see on site and hopefully capture some good photos to post alongside! Equally any contribution of photos that you may take on your visit to Collard Hill can be emailed to me at collardhill@gmail.com, I shall be happy to post!

My first few days here have been fruitful in the variety of plants and wildlife I have seen, here are a selection of my pictures I would like to share with you… there’s sure to be more to come in the coming days while we await the Large Blue!

Two Small White Butterflies doing the dance of love!

Two Small White Butterflies doing the dance of love!

These Cardinal Beetles have been flying all over the place - little flashes of red all over the site!

These Cardinal Beetles have been flying all over the place – little flashes of red all over the site!

A beautiful Butterfly Orchid on the route between the YHA and Collard!

A beautiful Butterfly Orchid on the route between the YHA and Collard!

A Common Spotted Orchid along the route from YHA to Collard Hill!

A Common Spotted Orchid along the route from YHA to Collard Hill!

A spectacular view from Collard Hill!

A spectacular view from Collard Hill!

This little critter was sat ready and waiting for lunch!

This little critter was sat ready and waiting for lunch!

A Red Admiral basking in the sun in all its glory!

A Red Admiral basking in the sun in all its glory!

I believe this is a Cryptocephalus hypochaeridis but any other views are welcome!

I believe this is a Cryptocephalus hypochaeridis but any other views are welcome!

I spotted this extremely white moth below my feet in the Orchid area of Collard Hill I believe it to be a Spindle Ermine moth

I spotted this extremely white moth below my feet in the Orchid area of Collard Hill I believe it to be a Spindle Ermine moth

These two Small Heath Butterflies were twirling together all along the Eastern Glade!

These two Small Heath Butterflies were twirling together all along the Eastern Glade!

Hope to see many of you soon!

Rosie

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9 thoughts on “A quick hello as the 2015 Large Blue Ranger!

  1. Great to hear from you Rosie. Lets hope for some good large blue weather! i live in Surrey so a long journey to Collard.

  2. I am interested in coming to see the Large Blue as I am hoping to see all the British Butterflies. At present I am on 47 with plans for eight hopefully this year inc the Large Blue. Would you let me know when they emerge and can I ask for help when I come down with regard to site information etc Good Luck in your post and thanks in advance 🙂 Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2015 17:45:40 +0000 To: popetongal@outlook.com

    • Of course! Good luck on your British Butterfly travels! I look forward to meeting you! Keep an eye on the blog and the whereabouts and numbers of Large blues will be included. There will be myself and a volunteer onsite ready to help in any way we can !!

  3. Thanks for introducing yourself Rosie, I hope it will be third time lucky for me this year, I haven’t seen a LB yet, and from Wales cannot keep visiting. Yes, please let us know when / if (no, that’s too negative) WHEN they appear. Also if the requisite ants are there and active. Obviously I am on your email list, looking forward to a trip to Collard Hill in a sunny period in a couple of weeks, with clouds of LBs. All the best with the research for your Masters.

    Vic Warren C Eng C Env Visit my (occasional) environmental blog at http://www.greenstuff.org.uk/

    Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2015 17:45:40 +0000 To: vic.warren@hotmail.com

  4. I am hoping to come down next week to see the Large Blue ….dependant on the weather I am coming from North Wales so I need to try and pick my day …if I come down can I contact you the day before and ask for help and advice on site as it would really be a great thing for me to see this butterfly on my way to seeing all the British species. Do I need permission to enter site ..is it easy to locate the butterflies or do I need help thanks Tony Pope 3 Stag Cottages Trefnant …LL16 5ua ..07502436695 . From: popetongal@outlook.com To: comment+ed4u_5r960xqztbt8hcwhdn@comment.wordpress.com Subject: RE: [New post] A quick hello as the 2015 Large Blue Ranger! Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2015 21:19:23 +0100

    I am interested in coming to see the Large Blue as I am hoping to see all the British Butterflies. At present I am on 47 with plans for eight hopefully this year inc the Large Blue. Would you let me know when they emerge and can I ask for help when I come down with regard to site information etc Good Luck in your post and thanks in advance 🙂 Date: Wed, 3 Jun 2015 17:45:40 +0000 To: popetongal@outlook.com

    • Hi, I will be onsite 9-5 Wednesday to Sunday 9-5 and other volunteers should be present on Mondays and Tuesdays. You do not need any permission to enter the site, it is a public site. As long is the weather is good you have a good chance of seeing one, I should be able to point you in the right direction to see the Large Blue or indeed track one down for you! The numbers are expected to increase this week and peak of the season by the weekend. If you also keep an eye on the blog I update it daily when I am on site and the butterfly activity and the places on site they are being seen are included. You can email me at collardhill@gmail.com if you have any further questions but you should find me on Collard when you arrive.

      Good Luck

      Rosie

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