The whole area which the Winscombe Round encircles is great for spotting wildlife and in particular Butterflies. Many of the reserves that you pass through are really good for these little fluttery winged insects. So much so, that throughout the summer months (April to September) a band of volunteers carry out surveys to count how many they can see. These surveys involve walking a set route once a week, when the weather is suitable for the butterflies to show themselves (not too cold or windy) identifying and counting all that are seen in a 5 meter width track along the route or Transec. All the information is then sent to the United Kingdom Butterfly Monitoring Scheme which collects and analyses what is going on in the butterfly world.
One of the reserves that was surveyed in 2021 was Dolebury Warren which contains an unusual mixture of wildflowers including: small scabious, early purple orchid, rockrose and eyebright flower in the limestone grassland which covers the summit and slopes, flourishing alongside such ‘acid-loving’ plants as bell heather, all helping to provide energy sources and breeding habits for the butterflies.
To give you a flavour of what you can spot here is a selection of butterflies which were photographed by the survey team during the 2021 season, which ones can you spot this summer?