Brown Hairstreaks need your help. They are in serious trouble between Amroth and Broad Oak, having seemingly disappeared from every known site since 2009. Ironically, we alerted Welsh government to this likelihood in 2008 but received no response. As ever, there is likely to be a complexity of contributing factors, but the greater % of hedges being mechanically flailed annually during the last decade has undoubted contributed - 80% to 90% of eggs are removed from young blackthorn shoots in each pass of the flail! We are however embarking on a concerted effort to search both new and old sites between Carmarthen and Llandeilo during November & December.
As you "mothers" obviously get about a bit, do let us know if you spot any unflailed blackthorn either in hedges or scrub in the Tywi valley. You can e-mail us via "Contacts" on South Wales branch web page:
If you'd like to search yourself, the eggs stay on unflailed blackthorn all winter, hatching in April and are mostly commonly located between main stem and side shoot. A hand lens is useful.