Class 1 have been caring for 5 Swallowtail Podalirius (scarce swallowtail) pupae. These butterflies are visitors to Britain from southern Europe and north Africa. The British cousins Swallowtail machaon can be seen on the Broads sometimes.
In the last 24 hours two of our pupae have hatched into beautiful butterflies. One male and one female.
The males have a narrow straight abdomen and the females have a thicker, curvier abdomen. We released our first two in the school’s wildlife garden, as it is full of Hawthorn flower (May blossom) and other plants the butterflies like and use when they are here. These butterflies like gardens, woodlands and sometimes town areas.
In Kelling we have many traditional gardens, the grounds of Kelling Estate, with its woodlands and Kelling Quag (a large area of marshland with a pond, inhabited by water birds such as ducks, geese, moorhens and swans).
The British cousins of this species love this type of habitat, and it’s likely there will be elements our butterflies will enjoy too. This area is also close to a long country lane full of wildflowers and hedgerows, including Sloes and Hawthorn, which our butterflies like to live on here and back home.
Below is the second release of the Swallowtails that we did at the Quag. All five have now been released.
Below are the remaining four butterflies that we released. They were small early Tortoiseshell butterflies that are native to Britain.