On my various walks over the last couple of weeks it has been very noticeable just how many Red Admirals are still on the wing. They are a frequent sight across the whole of the UK and one of our most recognisable butterflies, but until researching this post I hadn’t realised that they are in fact a migrant species. Despite their ubiquitousness for much of the year it is our cold winters that mean that most do not survive to see another spring. This one was seen last weekend at WWT Llanelli where it was soaking up some autumn rays.

25252 - Red Admiral, Llanelli WWT
25254 - Red Admiral, Llanelli WWT

It’s not all doom and gloom however as with warming climates the south of England has been able to record individuals flying throughout January and February, leading to the declaration of a resident population. Although small this population is expected to spread to other areas of the UK if temperatures continue to rise, but for now we are largely reliant on influxes from Europe to top our numbers up.


theconstantwalker · November 3, 2011 at 10:42 pm

Lovely images Adam… I saw one last Sunday and it's in my little video of the deer at Tatton Park (the post before the Robin)
Always a delight to see.

Bob Bushell · November 3, 2011 at 11:29 pm

Beautiful, with their eyes, looking for something.

TexWisGirl · November 3, 2011 at 11:49 pm

poor little tattered wings…

holdingmoments · November 4, 2011 at 9:14 am

One of our most spectacular butterflies I think Adam. This one has certainly seen better days though.
I've seen a few on the wing recently, when the sun has made a brief appearance.

J · November 4, 2011 at 4:48 pm

I've seen a few about recently, too, but haven't managed any photos. Lovely photos!

Dave · November 6, 2011 at 4:08 pm

funny that you posted this Adam…. I saw a late Red Admiral today at Macclesfield Forest. When someone asked me what I was looking at they kind of sniggered that I was wasting my time as its only a Butterfly…. if only they understood!!

Great post mate

Adam Tilt · November 7, 2011 at 9:26 pm

Andrew – there are definitely plenty about. I saw several more this weekend.

Bob – they certainly are.

TexWisGirl – sadly it's a short and hard life being a butterfly.

Keith – sun lovers. I can relate to that.

Jeremy – thanks very much.

Dave – sadly some people will never appreciate what is right in front of them. Glad you enjoyed the post.

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