This is as good as I got from half an hour of stalking Orange-tips around the boggy bits of Trench Meadows.
I'd wandered along Baildon Bank, seeing my first Large White of the year, and then down through Shipley Glen to Trench Meadows. On arrival the sun was behind cloud and it wasn't looking too promising. At this time of the year the grassland is looking quite bare, with the winter grazing regime leaving everything cropped, but in theory cropped to just the right degree so that the distinctive flora which gives this site SSSI status can recover without getting crowded out by more common herbage. I'd reached the NW corner when the sun came out and suddenly four Orange-tips appeared as if from nowhere and made a beeline for the few clumps of Lady's Smock which seemed to offer their preferred nectar today. They then set off at pace to the far side of the meadow which left a dilemma if I were to get a photograph. Do I follow at a fast walking pace, or so I stake out some Lady's Smock and wait? I should accept that these little butterflies are nimbler than I though, and I should also be happy that a distinctive butterfly in a sea of soft rush can still make a nice image, and it doesn't have to be close-up every time.
All of which was just a circuitous route, completed by a walk back along the canal, to get to Shipley to pick up some train tickets for a mini break with the kids which is scheduled to start tomorrow, although 9yo is a little poorly so we may have to reassess in the morning.
Butterfly Journal 2017
9. 18/04/17: Large White, Baildon Bank (VC64)