Scarce large blue butterflies have Dutch carnival float

Blues in the marshes

In carnival in the Netherlands this year, there is not only participation by Syrian refugees.

Translated from the Dutch Vlinderstichting entomologists:

Feb 4, 2016 – This weekend the time has come: carnival. Many people look forward to it, others can not wait until it’s over. This year it is a very special carnival because the scarce large blue butterflies join! To make the nature restoration project ‘Blues in the Marshes’ known to people there will be in the big parade in Den Bosch on Monday, February 8th a real scarce large blue butterfly float.

In 2018 there will be after completion of the LIFE + project ‘Blues in the Marshes’ in Den Bosch around 170 hectares of new nature. In the Vlijmens Ven and the Honderdmorgen there are created on an area as large as 340 football grounds humid arid grasslands, including Cirsio dissecti-Molinietum grasslands. One of the target species is the extremely rare scarce large blue butterfly, but all of nature will benefit strongly and the scenery is becoming more beautiful and more enjoyable.

However, today, 8 February 2016, is a stormy weather day. Because of that, many carnival parades in the Netherlands, and in Germany, have been canceled. Including the one in Den Bosch. The Den Bosch carnival association says they now want to have the parade on 6 March, Laetare Sunday. Until then, the scarce large butterfly float and the other floats will have to wait.

Woman dressed like scarce large blue butterfly

On 6 March, the weather may be better for human carnival parade participants dressed up like scarce large blue butterflies …

The scarce large blue butterfly float is also inspired by painter Jeroen (Hieronymus) Bosch.

This Dutch November 2015 video is from the film ‘Holland – natuur in de delta’. It was recorded near Den Bosch.

It says about itself:

How to film Maculinea teleius, Scarce Large Blue?

Butterflies, video

This is a video about butterflies from the Netherlands.

Dutch review of ten European butterfly books: here.

Dutch butterflies in January 2016: here.

Comma butterfly’s unusual hibernation

This video is called Comma (Polygonia c-album) butterfly.

Translated from the Dutch Vlinderstichting entomologists:

Jan 19, 2016 – There are four butterfly species that traditionally spend the winter in the Netherlands as butterflies. They curl up in sheltered spots and wait for the first spring days to become active and to reproduce. Peacock and small tortoiseshell often go to sheds, attics and old military bunkers for this. Comma butterfly and brimstone winter in bushes and fagots.

But while checking bunkers on the presence of hibernating bats Kees Mostert found on the border of Germany and Poland a comma entirely at rest. This is very unusual, and as far as known, this has not been seen before in the Netherlands. For many years, the bat counters also have been looking out for other animals they encounter in the bunkers. They often see peacock and small tortoiseshell butterflies and also moths like the herald moth and buttoned snout are regularly reported, but so far no comma.

Botanical garden blackbirds, butterflies and jays

Herring gull, 17 January 2016

This 17 January 2016 photo shows a herring gull on the roof of the ‘oranjerie’, the oldest hothouse, built in the eighteenth century, in the botanical garden. The bird drank from the gutter.

Before we arrived at the botanical garden, greenfinches and collared doves in trees.

In the garden, ring-necked parakeets flying and calling.

Blackbird male, 17 January 2016

Past the old astronomical observatory, a male blackbird eating berries.

In the Victoria amazonica hothouse, gold-edged owl butterflies flying around.

Jay, 17 January 2016

Before we left, we saw jays feeding on acorns.

January butterflies in England

Peacock butterfly, 4 January 2016

From RSPB Minsmere nature reserve in Suffolk in England; where not only birds have been seen today; on Twitter today:

Not one, but two butterflies seen today: painted lady in dunes & this peacock in North Bushes

Dutch butterflies 2015 Top Five

This video shows a male common blue butterfly in England.

According to the Dutch Vlinderstichting entomologists today, 2015 was not a good year for butterflies, with less individuals observed than in an average year.

The Top Five for butterfly species observed was:

1. Meadow brown 46,516

2. Small white 19,000

3. Green-veined white 15,837

4. Ringlet 12,945

5. Common blue 10,568

Dutch butterflies flying at Christmas

Large tortoiseshell

Kars Veling, of the Dutch Vlinderstichting entomologists, reports today (translated):

Dec 27, 2015 – People hoped and speculated that this year butterflies would be seen at Christmas. On Christmas Day the weather was not good enough, but on [sunnier] Boxing Day dozens of active butterflies were seen. The red admiral was the most numerous, but the observation of the large tortoiseshell was probably the most spectacular. …

The most commonly reported butterfly on and Telmee was the red admiral. 16 individuals were seen. In second place came the brimstone with seven animals and there were six peacock butterflies. Two cabbage white butterflies were seen flying and observers could not determine what species they were. Probably small whites, who also last week had been seen a number of times. Really spectacular was the observation by Marcel Prick and Anton Cox in South Limburg, where they discovered a large tortoiseshell. This is a very rare butterfly in the Netherlands. It remains warm [for December] and who knows how many more butterflies will be seen in this tail end of 2015.

Dutch asparagus growing at Christmas: here.