I planted Red Valerian to attract Hummingbird Hawk Moths to the garden…

And today the Hummingbird Hawk Moths arrived 👍

They’re one of my favourite moths, and if you’ve ever seen one you’ll know exactly why they get their name. In fact, they look and behave so much like their feathered namesake that every year the RSPB get phone calls from worried members of the public reporting that they’ve seen escaped Hummingbirds!

Continue reading “I planted Red Valerian to attract Hummingbird Hawk Moths to the garden…”

Why are we seeing so many Hummingbird Hawkmoths?

Hummingbird Hawkmoth 2017

It’s the wind what done it!

Hummingbird Hawkmoths migrate to the UK every year from southern Europe and north Africa. If you’ve ever seen one you’ll know why they get their name. In fact, so closely do they resemble a Hummingbird the RSPB gets phone calls every summer from bewildered gardeners reporting actual sitings of Hummingbirds!

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Brimstone Butterfly

Garden Brimstone Butterfly West Sussex Bepton

Female Brimstone is yellowish-green – with an orange spot in the middle of each wing

It’s so easy to get distracted by the butterflies in the garden. And this summer is turning out to be a great year for being sidetracked with butterfly numbers much higher than previous years.

Here’s a Brimstone. They’re traditionally one of the early butterflies and can be seen right through Spring and Summer in hedgerows and gardens. Brimstones have a single brood, and they’re a hibernating butterfly. They’ll spend the winter in ivy, holly and bramble, re-emerging early in Spring to breed.

South Downs Purple Emperor Butterfly



I’ve waited 40 years to see one of these…

Today was a very special day for me. Because today I saw a Purple Emperor for the very first time. Which is pretty special, because I’ve been looking for one of these elusive butterflies since I was about ten years old. As a small boy browsing through my Observer’s Book of British Butterflies, the Purple Emperor and the Camberwell Beauty were the butterflies that dreams were made of. And today – after many years of looking – my dream finally came true!

Continue reading “South Downs Purple Emperor Butterfly”