Having lucked out last week, I was over the moon during this week’s visit to Aberbargoed Grasslands NNR to see my first Marsh fritillaries of the year.
Perhaps it was the company of my friend Sharon that brought me luck (it was our first meeting in almost nine months).
And, no doubt, bumping in to the ranger on site really helped, as he pointed out which field he’d just seen half a dozen butterflies in (the main field where they’re usually seen is still very waterlogged).
The day of our visit was the first really sunny day in a while, and, as most of the fritillaries were sitting quietly amongst the tussocks and clumps of grass, soaking up the sunshine and flexing their wings, I got the feeling that many had only just emerged from their pupae.
We saw nine Marsh fritillaries in total – I’m sure there were more we missed. They are such stunning creatures that I’m already planning a return visit.