30/08/2017 Fermyn Woods Country Park, Kettering

Silver-washed Fritillary: Fermyn woods is one of the places I have recently heard about and have been dead keen to go visit. It's a famous place for butterflies, including the rarer ones such as black hairstreak, purple emperor, white admiral and white letter hairstreak.
Fermyn Woods are an ancient woodlands containing semi-natural oak and ash woods, along with conifer plantations. Situated in the heart of the Rockingham Forest, the park offers access to fantastic woodlands, meadows, thickets, marshes and ponds to explore.
I took the opportunity to make the small diversion on my way to Essex to see my mum and very glad I did as I managed to see almost all my target butterflies.
Purple Emperor: Number one was this beauty, the very large and very tricky to see Purple Emperor or Britain's "rock star butterfly."
They are Britain’s second largest butterfly, with a wingspan of more than 8cm and they are very elusive, flying high in the tree tops of woodlands to feed on aphid honey dew and tree sap.

I saw plenty of large butterflies flying above the tree canopy but never had a decent enough view to spot the emperor, I was about to give up when this stunning female landed right in front of me, affording me some excellent views.

Silver-washed Fritillary: The woods were awash with all sorts of bugs, birds and butterflies and it was deep in the woods where I saw the largest populations of Fritillaries.

This butterfly is our largest fritillary and gets it's name from the beautiful streaks of silver found on the underside of the wings, look close here and you will see no 'pearls' but silvery steaks.

White Admiral: Another new butterfly to add to my list was this, the White Admiral, another woodland species and a delight to behold as it literally glides along forest rides, flying from tree to forest floor and back up with only a few effortless wing beats.
For this reason, some of its closest relatives on the continent are known as "gliders".

I could have spent all day here, not just because it was miles away and took me ages to get to but it is a brilliant little place. It was a shame I had to leave to complete my journey to Southend.
Marbled White: In the middle of the park, between the visitor centre and woodlands there is a small raised area which contains a wild flower meadow.
Spend some time here and you will see the marvellous marbles White butterfly.
The word awesome is sometimes an overused and overrated word.....but in the case of Fermyn Woods Country Park, the word awesome is very apt!

The place was full of fluttering butterflies.