Welcome to the Hertfordshire & Middlesex Branch sightings page for butterfly and moth news from around the area
2017 (Jul-Dec) 2001-2016
Submission of records
Please include grid reference (6 digits preferred but 4 digits will do) or post code for your sightings. If you have the
what3words app you can supply me with the 3 words denoting the site. Grid
reference can be obtained using the Gridreferencefinder or
Streetmap. If you need any guidance let me know.
Most, if not all, sightings listed here with sufficient detail given, will be added to the branch database but see note below. Some sightings if deemed 'trivial'
may not be posted here but will still be included on the database.
Wherever possible please use the iRecord website or
app to submit your butterfly (not moth) records to reduce the possibility of transcription errors - please read the
General Recording page for details. If you are using a spreadsheet please enter your
records in the correct format - see following example; this will ease the amount of work for the county recorder.
For moths however, the much preferred method is to submit your moth records on a spreadsheet, if you can, in the format shown
here. More information can be found on the
Moths - Introduction page.
NOTE: To avoid any duplication, if you are submitting records via a spreadsheet to the Branch Recorder
(Andrew Wood) and also have emailed me for the sightings page please let Andrew or me know. Records entered
on the iRecord and iNaturalist databases, for example, will be picked up and verified by Andrew.
Photos are welcome and a selection will be posted on this webpage but please keep these to a reasonably small size. Provide a link if your
photo is on an external application like Flickr. Alternatively post your photo on
Please email Peter Clarke (firstname.lastname@example.org) to send in your news.
|One Brown Hairstreak egg found at King George's fields near Holywell
|Eugene Dillon-Hooper reports a sighting of a Small Tortoiseshell in the Enfield area late morning
|Two Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Croxley Common Moor
|Following on from recent Brown Hairstreak egg finds in the Stanmore area I decided to revisit an area of blackthorn off Old Redding near
the Harrow View point first seen in January 2022. It is a public footpath with prunus along the hedge line – in total I found 8 Brown Hairstreak eggs but to my
surprise I looked at two probable Cherry Plum bushes that were already flowering and found 2 eggs despite the flowers! Another blackthorn twig had 3 eggs very
close to each other
|One Brown Hairstreak egg found at Hampstead Heath
|Painted Lady - fresh individual on plum flowers by Sivyer's lake at end of Hazelwood Drive, Sunbury-on-Thames at 12.30 pm. Seen by three people
|One Brown Hairstreak egg found at Moat Mount Open Space, near Barnet
|Having visited Totteridge now four times, the last on Tuesday when it rained - I could only find 4 more Brown Hairstreak eggs but all in
slightly different areas, I decided to go somewhere new! I started from Quinta Park in Barnet and followed the Folly Brook Loop walk to Totteridge Fields. Over a
3½ hour period I found 3 Brown Hairstreak eggs which would be a new 2k so although only 3 its 3 more than had been found there!!! I was hopeful that
Totteridge Fields LWT Reserve would come up trumps but the blackthorn is not the type of blackthorn I like and a lot had been cut so a wasted walk! However the
fields between Totteridge Common and Barnet (Mays Lane) are lined with blackthorn and there must be more eggs to be found? Be warned the mud is dreadful in
|Hounslow. The butterfly year here began early with a male Brimstone on the heath near the railway. It was shortly followed, albeit in the
next tetrad along, by what was probably a Comma and then much later a likely Peacock was seen to fly on the far side of Pevensey Road meadows. This could well
have emerged from someone's garden shed in the back gardens and it certainly showed more interest in matters the other side of the fences there than in the wide
open spaces of the meadows, thus making it impossible for me to confirm that guess either. Nothing else seen so just one definite so far but clearly likely that
the hibernating species are around in small numbers for now.
Still working on doing things differently. This was the normal walk of just over 12 miles
modified to include extra time on the Marshalling Yard (which is now officially labelled as such and as a nature reserve - good news for sure even if I wasn't
rewarded by the butterflies.
|Five Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Edgwarebury Park
|Tricia Gibbons saw first Brimstone butterfly of 2024 in St Albans garden - so beautiful
|I just had a Brimstone in my St Albans garden. I think that’s the earliest for me
|I returned to Totteridge - it was far too sunny to see eggs properly and terribly muddy! I ended up with a total of 10 Brown Hairstreak
eggs, 6 in the same area as Wednesday's eggs finds near Folly Brook but also 3 in different areas of the scrub and a 4th close to where the very first egg in
2020 was found in the main area
|Red Admiral in my Northaw garden
|One Brown Hairstreak egg found at Hampstead Heath
|Two Brown Hairstreak eggs found at West Hendon Playing Fields
|I have spent the last two days searching the main fields at Totteridge and found 20 Brown Hairstreak eggs in total. Yesterday it was a
matter of finding 4 quite quickly and then waiting for at least another 1½ hours before the next eggs were found, today it was a bit easier. However, the
more interesting was that today I finished by crossing the Folly Brook where in previous years much searching for eggs has been conducted with no success and 3
Brown Hairstreak eggs were found quite quickly – I will need to return as there is still a lot of blackthorn to check here!
|Six Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Brockley Hill
|One Brown Hairstreak egg found at Composers Park, Elstree
|Ian Watts and myself decided to look at Merry Hill in Bushey following on from our close but not close enough Brown Hairstreak egg find
last week. There is a lot of blackthorn although some looked unsuitable - some areas ticked all the right boxes, oak, ash, bramble and nectar! In the end we
found 14 Brown Hairstreak eggs although nothing for the last hour!!! We think the site, or at least where the eggs were found is about 1½ km inside the
Hertfordshire border so we now wonder where else they can be found!
|So close but so far!! Following on from Rohan Harris’ recent very successful Brown Hairstreak egg finds at Stanmore Country Park, Ian Watts and
myself decided to try and find an egg in Hertfordshire today so we followed the London Loop from Aldenham Country Park towards Stanmore Common. Needless to say
the first decent blackthorn we found was where a ditch forms the boundary between Greater London and Hertfordshire. We found two Brown Hairstreak eggs one was
25 yards from the county border and the second was even closer at 10 yards! After that on our very muddy route back via Elstree, there was more blackthorn along the
London Loop (which we didn't search) but after we turned off back towards Elstree we found very little!
|Two new Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Fryent Country Park. Two also found at Welsh Harp Reservoir.
|1 Peacock seen in flight & settled on base of Hornbeam, edge of Williams Wd/Trent Park [TQ294973] at 1325 GMT - my earliest ever, I don't
think I have ever seen one in January
|Nine Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Stanmore Country Park
|Saw my first butterfly of the year: a Red Admiral flying in the sunshine in the Pinetum at Bayfordbury
|Had a Peacock in my back garden in Bengeo
|Three Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Fryent Country Park
|17 Brown Hairstreak eggs on the North West side of Fryent Country Park. Also 7 Brown Hairstreak eggs found at Stanmore Country Park
|Six more Brown Hairstreak eggs found at areas not previously searched on the East side of Fryent Country Park.
|Tony Hukin saw a Brimstone at Oughtonhead Common, Hitchin at around 1pm
|Took a walk around my local fields in Ware this morning and finally found a White-letter Hairstreak egg on the elms by the playing field
(usually much easier to find). Of note was that some of the elm flower buds were starting to burst. On blackthorn 5 Blue-bordered Carpet along Wood Lane
and a further egg along the hedge near Hollycross Road. Had an odd egg which was on an oak leaf bud, where a Purple Hairstreak egg would be found – but it was
ridged. Looked like a Green-brindled Crescent but wrong larval food plant and laying location???
|A single Red Admiral flying north along Stansted road Bishops Stortford at Fullers court lunch time TL492212.
|Searched six field enclosures at the East side of Fryent Park. Brown Hairstreak eggs found in every field but one. Total of 13 eggs found.
|Short visit to Fryent Country Park, found four Brown Hairstreak eggs three of which were in a field enclosure not previously searched
|A longer visit to Fryent Country Park, searched four field enclosures and found 27 Brown Hairstreak eggs
Brown Hairstreak egg search at Stafford Road Open Space, Ruislip
Volunteers joined a small handful of regulars at the Stafford Road Open Space in Ruislip to help with the annual egg survey for the Brown Hairstreak. Postponed
from the original date because of potential snow, the new date proved to be a very fine day to be out searching. Most of the volunteers were new to
the task but it took barely a minute to find the first egg and show exactly what it was that we were looking for. In fact, the first Blackthorn bush that was
searched contained 10 eggs and, spreading out, the volunteers soon got into their stride with egg finds coming thick and fast. In the public Open Space area,
it seemed that almost all of the Blackthorn contained at least an egg or two and every attendee had success finding eggs.
In only a couple of hours or so of
searching, a total of 103 Brown Hairstreak eggs (plus one Purple Hairstreak egg) were found, an excellent result that is consistent with the record number of
adult sightings last summer. The Ruislip site seems to be going from strength to strength.
Alongside the volunteer egg search, Malcolm Hull, Liz Goodyear and
Nick Furtek met with Ricky, an enthusiastic representative of TfL, to search for eggs on the adjacent TfL owned land that is not accessible to the general
public. A total of 15 Brown Hairstreak eggs were found, reinforcing how much this beautiful butterfly species is now part of the wider Ickenham and Ruislip
|Three Brown Hairstreak eggs on a quick visit to the southern area of Fryent Country Park to the East of Fryent Way. NW9 9SE
|A Peacock was flying in the sunshine along the trees in Panshanger Park
|I was pleasantly surprised to see a Red Admiral in flight & settled on ivy-clad tree near Archer's Wd/Forty Hall CP, Enfield [TQ333992]
this afternoon between 1317 & 1320 GMT
|We spotted a Red Admiral flying around our next-door neighbour's house in Bengeo late this morning in the rain, but before
the wind got up