Thursday 12th June 2014 - Titterstone Clee Hill

Today I undertook one of my regular visits to the nearby Shropshire high point of Titterstone Clee.  I was primarily going there looking for inverts as the mix of habitats such as rocky quarried slopes, acidic grassland and boggy pools is ideal for an array of wildlife.

On arrival I checked out the acidic pools at the entrance to the old quarry workings.  This area is great for Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) later in the summer but was fairly quiet today with the only notable dragon being an immature ♂ Broad-bodied Chaser that was just starting to develop its blue pruinescence.

Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa)

Whilst photographing the chaser I caught site of a medium sized orange/brown butterfly flitting about and landing on the rocky slope next to the pool.  Result! it was a Wall butterfly.  I had recorded a single one at this site the previous summer.  Better still a 2nd one was flitting around over the same slope.  The Wall is still a fairly common butterfly in some coastal areas but in the mid to late 90's there was a huge population crash leading them to be very scarce and localised in Central England.

Wall (Lasiommata megera) - Poor record shot

Also of note at Titterstone was the large numbers of Small Heath butterflies that were present.  The only other butterfly species recorded today was a single Small Tortoiseshell.

Small Heath (Coenonympha pemphigus)

As for the birds, the usual suspects were present with Meadow Pipits seemingly everywhere and Ravens 'kronking' away over the summit.  I was also treated to views of a single Peregrine that flew in and perched on one of the cliffs.

Peregrine (Falco peregrinus)

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