Tuesday 20 June 2017

Sierra Nevada, Granada Province.

Butterfly hunting up high again to try and avoid the heatwave below.
Day Two: with Kate and Jim from the UK.

Apollo (Parnassius apollo subsp nevadensis).
Today we went up even higher to get away for the heat and as we got nearer to the ski resort we could see the results of last nights storm, some of the slopes were again white but not with snow this time but large hail stones, the roads were also covered in debris after the rains had washed down the slopes.
Eurrhypis pollinalis.
After dropping Kate and Jim by the barrier and parking lower down we walked a short way out on the track to the Hoya de San Juan. In the short time we were along this track we caught up with some really good species including Apollo (Parnassius apollo), Spanish Brassy Ringlet (Erebia hispania), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera), Small Tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae), Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui), Queen of Spain (Issoria lathonia), Niobe (Argynnis niobe) and Cardinal Fritillaries (Argynnis pandora), Clouded Yellow (Colias corcea), Cleopatra (Gonepteryx cleopatra), Small White (Pieris rapae), Silver-studded Blue (Plebejus argus), a moth called Eurrhypis pollinalis and several Dung Beetles rolling the pooooo balls. 
Idas Blue (Plebejus idas).
We also saw some birds and wild Flowers during the walk including Northern Wheatear (Collalba Gris / Oenanthe oenanthe), Tawny Pipit (Bisbita campestre / Anthus campestris), House (Avión Común / Delichon urbica) and Crag Martins (Avión Roquero / Ptyonoprogne rupestris), House Sparrow (Gorrión Común / Passer domesticus) and Rock Sparrow (Gorrión Chillón / Petronia petronia).
Dung Beetle species.
We dropped down to an area near the resort and parked before taking another walk out on a track on to the slopes, where we parked we had a very smart Niobe Fritillary (Argynnis niobe) nectering on Knapweeds, here we also saw False Mallow / Mallow Skipper (Carcharodus tripolinus / alceae) and a Queen of Spain Fritillary.
Niobe Fritillary (Argynnis niobe).
Along the track we had Common Whitethroat (Curruca Zarcera / Sylvia communis), Melodious Warbler (Zarcero Común / Hippolais polyglotta), Dunnock (Acentor Común / Prunella modularis), Black Redstart (Colirrojo Tizón / Phoenicurus ochruros), Common Stonechat (Tarabilla Común / Saxicola torquata), Cleopatra (Gonepteryx cleopatra), two Cardinals which both sat nicely for the camera's, Purple-shot Copper (Lycaena alciphron), Southern Brown (Aricia cramera) and Southern Mountain Argus (Aricia montensis), Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas), Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) and Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis).
Niobe Fritillary (Argynnis niobe).
We dropped back down a good way and took the road behind the visitors center which was the original old road up and down the Sierra. 
Marsh Fritillary (Euphydrayas aurinia beckeri).
We stopped near the visitor center and checked the Thistles on the roadside where we saw Grayling (Hipparchia semele), Idas (Plebejus idas) and Escher's Blue (Agrodiaetus escheri).
Large Skipper (Ochlodes venatus).
Further down we stopped by a roadside meadow and had False Ilex (Satyrium esculi) and Blue Spotted Hairstreaks (Satyrium spini), Dusky Heath (Coenonympha dorus), Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli) and near the santuary and parked in the shade, we walked a little way up the road seeing lots more Iberian Marbled Whites, a couple more Cardinals, Spanish Purple Hairstreak (Laeosopis roboris), Speckled Wood (Pararge aegeria), Meadow Brown (Maniola jurtina) and a little further down the road we had much the same species along with Comma (Polygomum c-album), Marsh (Euphydrayas aurinia beckeri) and High Brown Fritillaries (Fabriciana adippe).
Cardinal Fritillarie (Argynnis pandora).
We also found Epipactis fageticola, Wren (Chochin / Troglodytes troglodytes), Sardinian Warbler (Curruca Cabecinegra / Sylvia melanocephala), Nightingale (Ruisenor Común / Luscinia megarhynchos), Mistle Thrush (Zorzal Charlo / Turdus viscivorus), Long-tailed Tit (Mito / Aegithalos caudatus), Common Chaffinch (Pinzón Vulgar / Fringilla coelebs), Bonelli's Warbler (Mosquitero Papialbo / Phylloscopus bonelli) and Blackcap (Curruca Capirotada / Sylvia atricailla).
False Mallow / Mallow Skipper (Carcharodus tripolinus / alceae).
Again we dropped down and had a quick look at the river but it was hot and the stop was just a quick one, however we picked up Southern Marbled Skipper (Carcharodus baeticus), Small Skipper (Thymelicus sylvestris), Black-veined White (Aporia crataegi) and Holly Blue (Celastrina argiolus).
Grayling (Hipparchia semele).
At this point we called it a day as it was getting on and more to the point hot. 
Southern Mountain Argus (Aricia montensis).
Large Skipper (Ochlodes venatus).
Small White (Pieris rapae).
Epipactis fageticola.
Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis).
Iberian Marbled White (Melanargia lachesis).
False Ilex Hairstreak (Satyrium esculi).
Iberian Scarce Swallowtail (Iphiclides feisthameli).
Southern Mountain Argus (Aricia montensis).
Black-veined White (Aporia crataegi).
Queen of Spain Fritillary (Issoria lathonia).

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