Sightings of Painted Lady Butterflies on Islay. It looks like the summer of 2019 has seen a once-in-a-decade influx of Painted Lady’s . Millions of the distinctive orange and black butterflies have traveled up to 7,500 miles to the British Isles from Southern Europe and North Africa.
The last time we saw this many of the species was back in 2009. Butterfly numbers tend to fluctuate from year to year, depending on the prevailing weather conditions. However, it’s not all good news. Over the last 40 years or more butterfly numbers have generally been in decline. This is partly due to intensive farming methods and a general loss of habitat. This has not been such a problem for Butterflies on Islay.
Painted Lady’s are only seen in the UK because of the amazing migration that they make. The winter is far too cold for them to reside here permanently. Because of their ability to travel long distances, they are the only species of butterfly to have been observed in Iceland.
Let’s hope we don’t have to wait another ten years before we experience another Painted Lady invasion