Llanelli Naturalists Newsletter - March 1984
Gavin Hall

Satyridae: Speckled Wood, Wall Brown, Marbled White, Grayling, Meadow Brown (most numerous species), Gatekeeper or Hedge Brown (2nd most common), Small Heath, Ringlet.

Nymphalidae: Dark-green Fritillary, Silver-washed Fritillary, Red Admiral, Painted Lady, Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Comma.

Lycaenidae: Small Blue, Brown Argus, Common Blue, Small Copper, Green Hairstreak.

Pieridae: Large White, Small White, Green veined White, Orange Tip, Clouded Yellow (up to 20 sightings a day in August, with a late record on 31.10.83).

Hesperidae: Dingy Skipper, Grizzled Skipper, Small Skipper, Large Skipper.

Altogether 29 different species of butterfly were recorded in 1983. No previously unrecorded species were sighted. Two species which had occurred in previous years but were absent in 1983 were the Pearl-bordered and Small Pearl-bordered Fritillaries.

The most exciting occurrence was the appearance of large numbers of Clouded Yellow during August - with up to 20 individuals seen together.

We are grateful for reports/articles such as the one above submitted by Gavin Hall. All Carmarthenshire, Clouded Yellow records including those above were sent to R.F. Bretherton who will incorporate them in the Annual report on the immigration of Lepidoptera to the British Isles to appear in the 1984 - "Entomologists Record". Mr. Bretherton comments that any late sightings of Clouded Yellows (such as Gavin's on 31.10.93) were probably of locally bred butterflies from earlier influxes, and that 1983 was the best year for this species since 1949.

All other noteworthy invertebrate records are submitted to Mrs. M.J. Morgan at Bangor University for distribution to the Biological Records Centre and for possible inclusion in 'Nature in Wales'.

The Forestry Commission's District Officer has been advised of the conservation value of a forest ride in Pembrey Forest, known to several members as the 'Butterfly Ride' (due to the wealth of its butterfly fauna), with a view to its inclusion in the forest's Conservation Plan so that prescriptions can be made to ensure that it continues to be managed by the Forestry Commission in a way compatible with the well-being of the butterflies.    Thirty-three species have been recorded then since its discovery in 1974 by Edward Smith; two species regularly seen here but not included in Gavin's nearby Country Park list are the Marsh Fritillary and the Silver-studded Blue. The ride is also rich floristically with Round-leaved Wintergreen (Pyrola rotund folia) and a profusion of orchids.

Some other rides in the Forest are also rich entomologically with moths such as the Mother Shipton (Euclidemera mi), Scarlet Tiger (Callimorpha dominula), Burnets (Zygaena spp,) and the Bordered White (Bupalis piniana) the latter's larvae feeding on pine.

A feature of the R.A.F. Bombing Range near Tywyn Point is the large number of Marsh Fritillaries to be seen there. This species is said to be declin¬ing in many parts of Britain due to drainage of marshes where its food plant, Devils Bit Scabious (Succisa pratensis) grows. It can also be seen locally at Cencoed uchaf and near the Upper Lliedi Reservoir.

There are few places in Wales that can match Pembrey - Tywyn Burrows in terms of number of species of insect and the numbers of individuals involved.