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An Abundance Of Butterflies On Broadstreet Common Near Fairlands

Published on: 22 Jul, 2019
Updated on: 24 Jul, 2019

There is an abundance of butterflies on the wing at Broadstreet Common, near Fairlands, this year.

And this could be part of a national phenomenon says the charity, Butterfly Conservation.

Combine this with the meadow, which is the result of wildflower reseeding and management work by Surrey Wildlife Trust, the result is a natural treat.

Broadstreet Common in July – Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Katy Fielding, liaison officer at Surrey Wildlife Trust, said: “I’ve never seen butterflies and wildflower meadows like this before in Surrey.

“It’s my new favourite place. When we visited with Natural England at the beginning of July, we were all blown away by the quality of wildflowers and invertebrate life – namely butterflies and crickets.

A Comma butterfly on Broadstreet Common. All the following photos are by Malcolm Fincham.

“These wildflower meadows are the highlight of the summer season, just as bluebells are the star attraction in spring. There are so many butterflies to spot, it’s even better than visiting a butterfly house, because it’s outdoors in nature and free of charge.”

Every year from June to September when the wildflowers are in bloom it attracts a kaleidoscope of butterflies says Surrey Wildlife Trust. On a sunny day in July more than 600 marbled white butterflies were spotted in less than 45 minutes.

Marbled White butterfly on Broadstreet Common.

Malcolm Fincham, who often photographs butterflies in his Birdwatcher’s Diary for The Guildford Dragon NEWS, said: “I must say, I was most impressed what I saw there, in comparison to how I remembered it in days gone by. It is so easy to forget what is right on your doorstep.”

Small Skipper butterfly on Broadstreet Common.

Broadstreet Common, which can be accessed from the Gravetts Lane entrance off the A323 Aldershot Road, is part of the Surrey County Council Countryside Estate which is managed by Surrey Wildlife Trust.

Work to increase biodiversity on the common has been going on since 2006 when Surrey Wildlife Trust removed turf in one metre squares and sowed native wildflower seed of local provenance.

In 2008 and 2009 the meadow was cut, the cuttings were removed and a further native wild flower seed mix was added. And it has certainly paid off.

Meadow Brown butterfly on Broadstreet Common.

Surrey Wildlife Trust says it is a perfect place to visit for anyone interested in getting closer to nature and learning about new wildlife species.

To get help with identifying the flora and fauna when you do visit, Surrey Wildlife Trust says you can try out the Seek app, presented by Our Planet and WWF.

Ringlet butterflies on Broadstreet Common.

Large Skipper butterfly on Broadstreet Common.

Gatekeeper butterfly on Broadstreet Common.


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Responses to An Abundance Of Butterflies On Broadstreet Common Near Fairlands

  1. Bill Stokoe Reply

    July 22, 2019 at 5:16 pm

    Pewley Down is bursting with them, including its special chalkhill blue.

  2. Harry Eve Reply

    July 22, 2019 at 10:07 pm

    What an uplifting site and experience for those who visit meadows like this.

    It is encouraging that, across the borough, groups of volunteers are doing their best to restore biodiversity.

    How sad that developers are pulling in the opposite direction by destroying trees and hedges while birds are nesting, and bulldozing our wildlife for their personal short term gain.

    Even sadder that so many of our councillors (the previous ones) were also intent on destroying large greenfield sites while undermining wildlife corridors and smaller sites elsewhere by removing vast areas from the green belt.

    We have an appalling Local Plan – let us hope that all current councillors seek to remedy the situation as quickly as possible.

    They have an opportunity on Tuesday evening by deciding not to defend the Judicial Reviews.

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