Butterfly Conservation - saving butterflies, moths and their habitats
Butterfly Conservation
saving butterflies, moths and their habitats
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This page is intended to serve as an indication of the butterflies and moths recently seen in the Yorkshire region (the Yorkshire Moths group also provides good information on moth sightings). Sightings don't have to be rare or unusual, the idea is to give other website users an idea of what to look out for. If you have sightings to report, send an e-mail to the webmaster with details of what you saw, the date you saw it and the general area in which it was. If you took any pictures on that day that you would like to share then include your favourite picture with the e-mail (we are looking for current photos, rather than your best pictures from the archives). We encourage you to submit your sightings to your Vice County Recorder details of whom can be found on the Recorders page. There is a standard form for recording butterflies which can be downloaded here and there is a checklist and notes about moth recording in Yorkshire which can be downloaded here. Click on the small picture or the links in the individual reports to see any attached photos - please note that images are the property of the photographer and should not be reproduced without permission.


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24th June 2016
Steve Bamford reports Small pearl-bordered Fritillary and Dark Green Fritillary on the wing at Jugger Beck on the 22nd. Samantha Batty reports Purple Hairstreak on the wing in her garden near Doncaster on the 22nd (first sighting). Stuart Ogilivy tells us that Large Skipper, Meadow Brown, Cinnabar Moth and Nettle-tap Moth were all flying in Huntington, York yesterday. Wendy Holliday in Ruswarp spotted more than 30 Chimney Sweeper, Straw Dot, Blood Vein and Small Yellow Underwing in the field adjacent to her home. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Buff Ermine, Poplar Grey and Spectacle.
21st June 2016
Michael Rushton recorded Dark Green Fritillary on the wing in Brockadale (first sighting). Tim Furness had a a walk down South Cliff in Scarborough yesterday afternoon where he spotted Speckled Wood, Large White, Painted Lady and best of all, on the grassy banks directly above the Star Map, and a first for Tim in Scarborough itself, 2 Dingy Skippers. Bernard and Maureen Featherstone were at Blacktoft sands where sightings included Meadow Brown, Ringlet, Green-veined White, Painted Lady, Speckled Wood and Brimstone. Bernard tells us that Large Heath are on the wing on Thorne Moor(first sighting) .
20th June 2016
Martyn Priestley in Low Moor, Bradford has captured this stunning Eyed Hawk-moth along with Varied Coronet and Plum Tortrix all three moth species being new for his garden.
19th June 2016
Mike Smethurst found this unusual dark form of Mottled Beauty at Thrybergh Country Park this morning. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Blastobasis lacticolella.
18th June 2016


Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Foxglove Pug, Buff Ermine and her first ever Puss Moth. Lee and Jax Westmoreland, also in Scarborough, captured their first Large Yellow Underwing of the season.... here we go!
15th June 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Mottled Rustic, Dusky Brocade, Peppered Moth and White Ermine. Lee and Jax Westmoreland in Scarborough spotted a Diamond-back hitching a lift on a Cockchafer!
12th June 2016
Allan Rodda and Jackie Holder were at Fordon Chalk Banks where their sightings included, Small Heath, Ringlet (first sighting), Meadow Brown (first sighting), Common Blue, Brown Argus, Orange-tip, Green-veined White, Large White, Speckled Wood, Small Copper, Large Skipper, Dingy Skipper, Painted Lady and Yellow Shell, Cinnabar and Silver Y. Alex Bozman in Linthwate has captured his first ever Miller.
11th June 2016
Mike Smethurst in Rotherham has captured Orange Footman and, just in time for National Moth Night, Elephant and Lime Hawk-moths. Lee and Jax Westmoreland in Scarborough captured Poplar Hawk-moth and Peppered Moth.
9th June 2016
Jesika and Jim Bone were at Three Hagges Wood where sightings included Small Copper, Yellow Shell and Silver-ground Carpet. At home in York, Jesika spotted this White Ermine (photo 2 and photo 3) laying her eggs which she subsequently rescued and put in a place of safety. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Poplar Hawk-moth, Clouded Bordered Brindle, Silver-ground, Green and Spruce Carpets, Common Swift, Bee Moth and Brimstone. Andrew Parkinson recorded Painted Lady, various Whites, Orange-tip male and female Common Blue, Brown Argus, Speckled Wood and a Silver Y moth at Kippax. Stuart Ogilvy was somewhat surprised to see a Painted Lady above Thornton Force yesterday at the edge of Twistleton Scars, a height of about 280 metres Also present were lots of Green-veined Whites.
8th June 2016
Andrew Parkinson recorded male and female Common Blue on the wing at Fairburn Ings yesterday. Belinda Robson in Scarborough spotted her first Holly Blue of the season in her Scarborough garden yesterday. Sightings for Ange Garrod in Sheffield over the past few weeks have included Brimstone, Orange-tip, Speckled Wood, and Comma. The moth trap has contained Herald, Bee Moth, Flame Carpet and Red-green Carpet. Andrew Rhodes recorded his first Large Skipper at Coniston Cold.
6th June 2016
David Plews was at Gypsy Marsh nature reserve in Wombwell where his sightings included Red Admiral, Dingy Skipper and Speckled Wood. David says that he was pleased to find the Dingy Skipper as it had been missing since the site was cattle grazed some years ago. At home, David tells us that there is an abundance of Brimstone larvae feeding on the Alder Buckthorne in his garden. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Common Swift. Melvyn Kirby reports Holly Blue on the wing in his Boston Spa garden and says that a Painted Lady was on the wing at Little Ribston yesterday. David Williamson reports eight Painted Lady at Kilnsea wetlands yesterday. Jesika Bone was at Three Hagges Wood where her sightings included Painted Lady along with Brimstone and male Orange-tip.
4th June 2016
Lee and Jax Westmoreland were with Allan Rodda at Hunmanby Grange where sightings included Painted Lady, Red Admiral, Holly Blue, Brimstone, Orange-tip, Large, Small and Green-veined Whites and Wall in amongst the hundreds of Diamond-backs! Ian Marshall tells us that there were four Small Heath at Wharram Quarry on 22nd May (first sighting) . Ian was at the same site both days last weekend and managed 17 Common Blue on Saturday 4th June. Sunday afternoon (5th) was much better conditions and Ian reorded 27 Dingy Skipper and 33 Small Heathalong with an excellent count of nine Burnet Companions. Jesika Bone found a caterpillar (picture 2) last year which she reared until it pupated (picture 2) over winter and today it has emerged as a beautiful Old Lady. Jesika spotted this Green Hairstreak on the Strensall Common field excursion on the 22nd May. Andrew Rhodes tells us that after the quietest Spring since he started recording in 2011 it was great to see the first Painted Lady on 4th June. It spent a few hours nectaring on the chalk bank patches of Thrift at Coniston Cold. Also recorded were 4 Orange-tips, 4 Green-veined Whites , single Small and Large whites. Andrew also located the first Orange-tip ova and larvae on Garlic Mustard and Sweet Rocket plants.
3rd June 2016
Lee and Jax Westmoreland captured Muslin (photo 2) and Pale-shouldered Brocade in their Scarborough moth trap. David Smith tells us that on the 29th May in the Barnsley area he recorded 6 Dingy Skippers, 2 Common Blue(first sighting) , Peacock, Orange-tip and in his garden, Holly Blue. At Wharram Quarry on the 30th he recorded Small Heath and Dingy Skipper. At North Grimstone Quarrythere were Dingy Skipper, Small Heath, Speckled Wood and Pyrausta aurata on the wing. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Scalloped Hazel, Common Marbled Carpet, Garden Carpet, Heart and Dart and Silver Y.
30th May 2016
Lindsey Bowes was on Strensall Common yesterday where she recorded Small Heath on the wing.
29th May 2016
Erich Hediger reports Large Skipper on the wing at North Cave (first sighting). Bob Hall spotted this Brimstone Moth perched on the window of his Normanton garage.
28th May 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Waved Umber and Common Pug.
27th May 2016
Dave Hatton in Pudsey has captured Rustic Shoulder-knot. Dave says it's the poorest mothing year to date in that location but he has seen Garden Carpet, Common Pug and Esperia sulphurella.
26th May 2016
Ralph Lilley trapped in Leavening where the catch included Eyed Hawk-moth, Swallow Prominent, Buff Ermine, Waved Umber, Chinese Character, Flame Shoulder, Common Pug, Hebrew Character, Spectacle, Common Carpet, and Shuttle shaped Dart. In Malton, Ralph has recorded Mullein (scarce in the area), Muslin Moth and Grey Pine Carpet.
22nd May 2016
Lindsey Bowes attended the Strensall Common walk which gave sightings of Green Hairstreak. Martin Partridge has also recorded Green Hairstreak north west of Commondale on the North York Moors.
21st May 2016
Allan Rodda, Jackie Holder, Graham Featherstone and Emma Featherstone trapped at where the catch was 33 species and included Scorched Wing and Lunar Thorn.
19th May 2016
Andrew Parkinson spotted Orange-tip and Speckled Wood on the wing in Kippax. Bernard and Maureen Featherstone were in Lindrick Dale Quarry where their sightings included Dingy Skipper, Green-veined White and Orange-tip. Jesika and Jim Bone were at Three Hagges Wood where their sightings included Orange-tip, Large, Small and Green-veined Whites and Peacock.
17th May 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Nut Tree Tussock, Spectacle and Garden Carpet. David Owen reports a Holly Blue on the wing in Headingley today.
15th May 2016
Ralph Lilley tells us that since the end of April he has captured Purple Thorn, Red Swordgrass, Pale Pinion, Herald and Buff-tip. Ralph also spotted 3 Dingy Skipper on Fordon Bank.
14th May 2016
Martin Partridge attended the field trip to Hawnby today where the cold wind resulted in only a single sighting of the Duke of Burgundy (photo 2).
12th May 2016
Martyn Priestley was amazed by the excellent camouflage of this Buff-tip which he caught in his Bradford moth trap. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured Shoulder-stripe. Graeme Baker was at Hawnby where his sightings included Dingy Skipper, Duke of Burgundy, Green Hairstreak and Speckled Wood. A further trip onto the moors provided sightings of Pearl-bordered Fritillary.
11th May 2016
Mike Smethurst in Rotherham has captured Lunar Marbled Brown and Purple Thorn and in Thrybergh Country Park he recorded Streamer. Belinda Robson in Scarborough has also captured three Streamers.
10th May 2016
Pete Mella reports Painted Lady on the wing in Grenoside, Sheffield yesterday (first sighting). Lee Westmoreland went to the castle hill in Scarborough today where his only sighting was a solitary Speckled Wood. Peter Hughes surveyed most of the known Green Hairstreak haunts on Baildon Moor yesterday. The strong winds may have been suppressing numbers but he came up with 30+, including one new location (See images One, Two and Three for nice variation in spot patterns). Around Baildon and the moor, Peter saw his first Red Admiral, Orange-tip and Holly Blues of the year, along with Small Tortoiseshell, Speckled Wood, Peacock and whites and says that there were plenty of Common Heath on the moor too.
9th May 2016
Karen Hargreave reports four Duke of Burgundy on the wing at Hawnby, also flying were Speckled Wood and Small White. This bodes well for the field excursion at the weekend! Allan Rodda visited Fordon Chalk Bank today where his sightings included Wall (first sighting), Brown Argus, Speckled Wood, Peacock, Large and Green-veined Whites, Orange-tip, Dingy Skipper, Brimstone and Red Admiral. Jack Whitehead and Jackie Holder report Pearl-bordered Fritillary on the wing in Spaunton today (first sighting).
8th May 2016
Steve Kirtly reports a single Duke of Burgundy on the wing at Hawnby (first sighting). Ange Garrod in Sheffield says butterfly sightings are starting to improve and she has seen Peacock, Speckled Wood, Small Tortoiseshell and Comma.
7th May 2016
Lee and Jax Westmoreland in Scarborough had only one moth in the trap this morning, a beautiful Herald, the first since 2014. Bernard and Maureen Featherstone were at Blacktoft Sands today where their sightings included Orange-tip, Green-veined White, Peacock, Brimstone, Small Tortoiseshell and Speckled Wood. Dan Lombard spotted a Brown Argus on the wing at Fordon Chalk Bank (first sighting).
6th May 2016
Belinda Robson reports Speckled Wood on the wing in her Scarborough garden. Paul Leyland tells us that Dingy Skipper are present on Fordon Chalk Bank. Andrew Parkinson was at Brockadale where he recorded Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, Orange-tip, Brimstone, Small White, Comma and Green-veined White.
4th May 2016
Mike Smethurst reports Dingy Skipper on the wing in Treeton near Rotherham today (first sighting). Aslo on the wing were Large and Small Whites, Brimstone, Orange-tip, Speckled Wood, Peacock and Small Tortoiseshell. Tim Furness in Scarborough reports 4 Holly Blue and a Small White on the wing in St Nicholas Gardens in the town centre and says that they are the first Holly Blue that he has seen there for a couple of years. Penny Relf reports Orange-tip on the wing in Hollicarrs and Peacock on the wing in Riccall.
3rd May 2016
Andrew Parkinson visited Sutton-on-the-forest near York where his sightings included this Brimstone.
24th April 2016
Jesika Bone in York reports Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, Large White, Brimstone and Small White on the wing in York. Jill Warwick tells us that recent trapping in her garden with the chilly nights hasn’t been very productive on the 21st she only caught single Clouded Drab and Hebrew Character. At the garden in Sharow, Ripon Jill saw the first Orange-tip (male) and Small White for the year, plus Peacock and Brimstone. On her usual dog walking route near the River Ure, Jill recorded three Peacocks and single Small Tortoiseshell and at Fountains Abbey on Tuesday 19th, she recorded five Peacocks, three Small Tortoiseshells and unidentified whites. Melvyn Kirby had a lovely walk on Ilkley moor in the sunshine on the 21st where he spotted several Peacocks & Small Tortoiseshells and was really pleased to find a Green Hairstreak (first sighting) sunning itself on the path near the Cow & Calf rocks. On Wednesday 20th April, Melvyn says that a Brimstone butterfly was flying near Bramham and a Small Tortoiseshell in his garden in Boston Spa on the same day.
20th April 2016
Allan Rodda and Jackie Holder captured this Pine Beauty at Wykeham Causeway on the 14th. Philip Brook reports Large White on the wing in Kippax (first sighting). Barry Warrington tells us that Large White was on the wing in Hessle on the 18th and that Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock and Brimstone were present on the 19th. Lee and Jax Westmoreland spotted a Green-veined White (first sighting) along with Large White and Peacock on the wing in Malton. Richard Hopkin reports a Hummingbird Hawk-moth on the wing in his Hull garden on the 17th.
13th April 2016
Jesika Bone reports Orange-tip on the wing in York (first sighting), Jesika has also seen Peacock, Comma, male Brimstone, Small Tortoiseshell and Small White over the past few weeks. Diane Wardley reports Holly Blue on the wing in Doncaster (first sighting).
12th April 2016
Over the past month, Alistair Taylor in Green Hammerton has captured Hebrew Character, Small Quaker, Lead Coloured Drab, Common Quaker, Early Grey and Oak Beauty. Alistair recorded a Brimstone on the the 20th March and along with Teresa Warbrick spotted a Small Copper on the wing in Hall Farm, Green Hammerton on the 25th March (first sighting). Andrew Parkinson sent us this photo of a Small Copper (caeruleopunctata) that he photographed in Kippax last August. Philip Brook (also in Kippax) reports Brimstone, Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock on the wing on the 11th.
10th April 2016
Ange Garrod in Sheffield has captured Pale Brindled Beauty and Ypsolopha ustella. Ange has also recorded Peacock and Red Admiral on the wing in her garden. David Owen spotted a Brimstone on the wing in his Headingley garden today. Bernard and Maureen Featherstone report Brimstone, Peacock and Comma on the wing on Hatfield Moor today. Les Driffield spotted a Speckled Wood on the wing on the 3rd April (first sighting) at Wentbridge. Mike McDonald reports Peacock, Brimstone, Small Tortoiseshell and Comma on the wing at Hedon Haven on the 8th.
7th April 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough has captured her first ever Pale Brindled Beauty.
Andy Riley
tells us that he first saw a Small Tortoiseshell back in February but that it didn't survive the next cold spell. Andy's daughter has since seen another on the garden decking in Knaresborough on 31st March. Andy has also seen a Peacock at Staveley Nature Reserve on the 18th March, and a gorgeous looking Brimstone flying over his garden on the 26th March.
2nd April 2016
Lee and Jax Westmoreland in Scarborough captured Clouded Drab, Water Carpet and Pale Brindled Beauty. Tim Furness spotted two Small Tortoiseshells on the wing in his Scarborough garden on the 25th March and a further pair near the town hall on the 31st March. Lee Westmoreland reports Small Tortoiseshell on the wing on the castle hill in Scarborough.
30th March 2016
Bob Hall spotted this Angle Shades in his Normanton garden and reports two Brimstones on the wing in the same spot.
27th March 2016
Barry Warrington spotted a Small White on the wing in Driffield on the 25th (first sighting) also present were Small Tortoiseshell and Brimstone. Carol Robinson reports Peacocks on the wing in her West Ayton Garden also on the 25th. Belinda Robson in Scarborough captured Early Tooth-striped, Diurnea fagella (melanic form) and Early Thorn.
23rd March 2016
Lee and Jax Westmoreland in Scarborough captured Beautiful Plume, Durnea fagella, Common Quaker and Early Grey, also in Scarborough, Belinda Robson captured Common Quaker and Early Grey. David Turner in Beverley has recorded Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Hebrew Character, March Moth. Yellow Horned and Early Grey.
20th March 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough captured Diurnea fagella. David Turner tells us that on the 12th March he spotted a Peacock on the wing in Grosmont and on the 13th a Small Tortosiseshell was also present.
12th March 2016
Belinda Robson in Scarborough captured her first Clouded Drab of the year. Also in Scarborough, Lee and Jax Westmoreland captured their first Hebrew Character and Agonopterix heracliana of the year. Jax later spotted a Peacock and a Small Tortoiseshell on the wing in the grounds of Scarborough Hospital.
11th March 2016
Mike Smethurst spotted this Acleris logiana at Thrybergh Country Park and says it's a good spot for them as he has seen them there in 2013 and 2015 also. Kelly Radford spotted a Small Tortoiseshell basking in the sunshine in Whiston, Rotherham on the 7th March.
2nd March 2016
Philip Brook reports a Small Tortoiseshell on the wing in his Kippax garden on the 28th February (first sighting). Unfortunately the butterfly was also spotted by an eagle-eyed magpie who promptly ate it!
20th February 2016
Melvyn Kirby reports a Red Admiral taking in the sunshine on the roof of his Boston Spa home on the 18th.
3rd February 2016
Jackie Holder and Jack Whitehead report a Peacock (first sighting) on the wing on Fordon Bank
24th January 2016
Andrew Cruikshanks spotted a Red Admiral (first sighting) on the wing in Sheffield city centre









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