Kent Branch News

Kent Branch News

Last updated on 22nd May 2017

 


 

David Gardner steps down as Chairman and a "Thank You"

After many years, David Gardner stepped down as Chairman of the Kent Branch at our AGM & Members Day on Saturday 20th May 2017.

On behalf of the branch and committee, I would like to thank David for all his help, the time he has put into running moth events and the branch, sharing with many of our members his knowledge, and for all the work and time he put into helping our reserve in Shoreham (White Hill Reserve). With his leadership and energy the branch has thrived and will continue to do so.

David, I hope your plans are fulfilled.  You leave the branch and committee with so many happy and fun memories and I hope you will continue to help with the cause of our moths and butterflies.  Please accept our thanks and best wishes for the future.

Ben Kirby - Website & I.T Officer - 22/05/17

 


 

Brown Hairstreak in Kent?

Article by David Gardner - Kent Branch Chairman

This butterfly is doing well in Surrey and other counties but has no modern records for Kent.  I visited the last known area Shadoxhurst, on my way back from the annual MOD conservation meeting at Hythe on 24th November.  I tried the wood complex to the west where Ian and I got a lot of good moths after heavy rain as I knew the track might be a good start.  Blackthorn was certainly growing out from the hedge as the butterfly likes but I found no sign of the eggs on my visit.  I did get three Ectoedemia spinocella mines which are the furthest inland I have seen them, even if the area is windswept and close to the old sea cliff.

The latest Surrey map created for the new Regional Action Plan, shows new records not far from the Biggin Hill part of Kent and also opposite Edenbridge so as I needed to go to my storage to drop more things off, I opted to search the Biggin Hill part of Kent aiming to go to a small village called Nash.   I found getting onto the road to Nash difficult with vehicles parked at the key place and so on but eventually was heading down the lane which was very like the one to Kemsing.  I spotted some Blackthorn in a field but I unable to park.  However once on Jackass Lane I found a small indent where I could park the car.

The access to the field was blocked by a large tree trunk but once round that I could see that a bridleway had been created to keep horses from danger on the bend.  There was an old gate now redundant due to the new track and it had Blackthorn hedges on either side which were extending into the field across what had been the way to the gate.   I started looking and soon found a small white object on a node a little over a foot above the ground and got the hand lens out and gingerly pushed my way down the stem and voila it was an egg so I photographed it and started searching on the other side of the gateway and found another.  This was not so easy to photograph but persevering with the thorns I got a good view and saw it was whiter than the first which made me wonder if I had been looking at a small caterpillar in the first egg.

Satisfied I had done what I set out to do I navigated my way home and found the landscape very like that at the south of Sittingbourne and many woods which may explain the good moths Bernard Skinner gets at New Addington and Graham Collins East of Croydon. 

I got the photographs transferred to the computer and sent them to the Surrey Butterfly recorder, Harry Clarke, who kindly confirmed them as Brown Hairstreak so it is now know to be in Kent too.

Did it just arrive or has it been there for ages?  Now we need recorders who would like some winter activity who can repeat what has been done in other counties by selecting a few 1KM squares each year and looking for the eggs in a structured way.  So would you like to help out next winter?  By then we may have more locations, perhaps even one with easy parking so we can show you what to look for and after a few years we may have a very good idea of where this butterfly really is in Kent

 Brown Hairstreak in Kent

Brown Hairstreak egg in Kent



Branch Treasurer, Jeremy Spon to stand down

 

Our branch treasurer, Jeremy Spon, has announced he intends to stand down at the end of this year (2016).  We would like to thank Jeremy for all the time and years he has given to the branch.

We are now looking for a new treasurer.  If you think you could help the branch and would like to find out more please contact David Gardner or Ade Jupp.

Ben Kirby - Website & I.T Officer - 04/03/16



Kent Branch websites move to head office website and look

If you visited www.kentbutterflies.org or www.kentmoths.org you may have been surprised to be directed to a different looking page/site.  Over the last few months, we have been busy moving the content from the existing websites across to our head office website and look.

Our online recording system will be coming back and details on how to access it will be announced later in the month.

As part of our website move we are now on Facebook and Twitter.  We would like/welcome members and visitors to post their photos, news, sightings and stories and to also follow us. Please see our main page for details.  We will also be using our Facebook and Twitter pages to announce any last minutes changes to field trips or moth events.

A new section to our website is member’s sightings.  We would like members and visitors to send us their photos, stories and sightings so we can share them on our website.  Please email your stories, photos etc to Ben Kirby.

Ben Kirby - Website & I.T Officer - 04/03/16

 



John Bangay steps down from the committee

John Bangay has sadly had to step down from the committee.  We would like to thank John for all the work and time he dedicated to the branch, during his year on the committee.

Ben Kirby - Website & I.T Officer - 04/03/16



Mike Brown

Mike Brown

 We are sad and sorry to announce the death of Mike Brown in November 2015.  Mike was a member of the committee for many years and dedicated a lot of time to the branch.  He was White Hill Reserve manager where he spent many years creating the reserve we know today, membership secretary and transect co-ordinator.

Mike also used to run our slide photographic competitions at Aylesford hall.  He always made sure all entries were correct and that the competition ran smoothly.  As a tribute to him we are planning to purchase a small glass trophy “The Mike Brown Trophy” and this will be presented to the overall favourite winner of our photographic competitions from 2017 onwards.

Mike will be greatly missed.

Ben Kirby - Website & I.T Officer - 04/03/16