The BMS transect on a scorching 1st brought a continued improvement in the seaon, with 348 butterflies taking the cumulative total for the year past last year's total at the same time of the year. Most (129) were Gatekeepers, which seemed to be everywhere in very large numbers, and Meadow Browns (98), while 'small' skippers (44) and Marbled Whites (20) were both showing signs of nearing the end of their flight period. At least 30 Peacocks and a Painted Lady were also recorded. Numbers remained high in the summer heat and the transect walk on the 6th produced 329 butterflies, taking the total for the year well past last year and not far from the 2011 total at the same time of year. Most (122) were Gatekeepers, with 89 Meadow Browns, while 4 Brown Argus was more than seemed likely a few weeks ago. However, there was only a handful of Marbled Whites and skipper numbers were well down, with most butterflies to be found in the remaining moister parts of the route. Undoubtedly the highlight of the day was a Swallowtail on Worth, flying inland from the direction of the sea and following several other reports from East Kent, including one on buddleia at the hoverport a couple of days previously.
The transect on the 12th produced 249 butterflies, taking the cumulative total for the year well beyond 2012 and, for the first time, past 2011. Whilst the last three years have been the poorest of the last seven, 2013 is now the best of the three. Apart from 98 Gatekeepers, many of which were tiny individuals, hardly bigger than Small Coppers in some cases, there were 28 Common Blues, which have undergone a widespread emergence in the last few days, 60 Meadow Browns, but just one Marbled White. 20 Peacocks and 7 Red Admirals, with one of the latter flying in off the sea in the morning, were nectaring on hemp agrimony on the 13th and a Wall was basking along the Ancient Highway. There has been a major influx of LONG-TAILED BLUE along the south coast this year and one at the hoverpad in Pegwell on the16th was the first record for the recording area. The transect walk on the 19th was even better, with 304 butterflies including large numbers of Lycaenids and day totals for the Estate including 150 Common Blues, 30 Brown Argus, 15-20 Small Coppers and 5 Clouded Yellows, at least 5 more of which were fluttering about on New Downs. An example of the pale helice form of Clouded Yellow was seen at Restharrow on the 20th