Butterfly Conservation
saving butterflies, moths and our environment
Butterfly Conservation - saving butterflies, moths and our environment

Team Grayling 2018 Update

July 22nd 2018

2018 has got of to a good start with more Grayling sightings posted in the first 10 days since their emergence this year, than in the whole of 2017 and 2018 combined. We would like to thank all those who have made the effort to visit Deep Dene and Windover Hill and record Grayling.

It is too early to tell if 2018 is going to be a good year for Graylings, and to be honest the lack of recording data from previous years makes difficult to make the assessment. What we know is that in a good year the Graylings push out from their core site at Deep Dene into the surrounding area, most notably Windover Hill and Ewe Dean.

The next phase of our monitoring involves understanding how the Grayling is using Deep Dean and what areas it is breaking out into. We have divided the Deep Dean and the surrounding district into survey areas and would like recorders to report back on these specific areas.

When Grayling please record

  • The survey area
  • The time of day
  • The temperature
  • The amount of cloud cover
  • Number of butterflies seen

It would be helpful if you could record the sex of the butterfly. It is also vital to record zero counts from a survey area. You can see from the table below that we have no sightings from Ewe Dean since 2009. It is not clear if this is because there have been no Grayling there or because no one went to look for them after 2009.

The Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre have kindly provided us with two maps of historic Grayling sightings in both the Deep Dene area and Sussex as a whole. It is clear that over the past twenty years the Deep Dean/Windover complex has become first the primary and latterly the sole location for Graylings. The collapse of the Grayling population in Lullington Heath was due to environmental factors and it is unlikely that we will see the Grayling return there in the near future.

Downloads

Deep Dean and Windover survey areas

Graylings in Windover area: 1998 -2017

Graylings in Sussex: 1998 -2017

Graylings in East Sussex: 1990 -2014

EastSussexGrayling2014.jpg

East Sussex Grayling Recording by Year

The following table represents the number of accurate records by site and year.

Year

Deep Dean

Ewe Dean

Folkington Hill

Friston Forest

High and Over

Lullington Heath

Ouse Estuary

Windover

1998

11

1

1

5

4

1999

12

1

10

2

2000

10

1

3

3

2001

1

2

3

2002

7

2003

3

6

2004

4

1

2

2005

2

3

1

4

5

2006

10

1

4

3

4

2007

31

1

2

8

2008

14

1

1

6

2009

8

2

3

11

2010

4

1

2011

2

2012

1

2

2013

1

3

7

2014

4

5

2015

6

1

2

2016

8

1

2017

7

1

130

9

3

6

3

47

3

67

The following sites have only one record of a sighting in the past 20 years and possible represent transitory butterflies.

Beachy Head

Butts Brow

Cuckmere Valle

Fairlight

Frog Firle Farm

Hastings Country Park

Icklesham

Newhaven

Rye Bay

Seaford Head

Willingdon

East Sussex Grayling Butterfly Counts by Year

Some records had a range of values (eg 10 to 30) and in these cases the lowest value was taken.

Year

Butts Brow

Deep Dean

Ewe Dean

Folkington Hill

Friston Forest

High and Over

Lullington Heath

Ouse Estuary

Windover

1998

63

30

1

52

31

1999

45

10

151

12

2000

112

30

3

22

2001

10

32

2002

28

2003

58

45

2004

24

59

11

2005

81

6

1

81

7

2006

37

1

5

8

6

2007

12

138

2

2

41

2008

166

1

1

20

2009

53

2

3

23

2010

78

6

2011

2

2012

2

5

2013

1

3

121

2014

109

158

2015

38

2

14

2016

55

1

2017

10

1

12

1069

137

3

7

6

416

3

470

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