Glasgow & SW Scotland Butterflies

Glasgow & SW Scotland Branch Website

November 16, 2009

Chequered Skipper Survey on Ardgour 31 May 2009

Filed under: Butterflies — admin @ 7:13 pm

We took the Corran ferry to the west side of Loch Linnhe and turned south along the coast road. References provided for Doire Donn SWT reserve to the north were numerous and recent, whereas those to the south were fewer, with only one recent (2008) record from Glen Gour.


Sallachan is at the mouth of Glen Gour, and the 1985 record for NM985633 is from an area to the north of the village that seemed quite heavily wooded, although there was marshy ground between there and the river. We did not see any butterflies near here. The glen opens out to the west of Sallachan and has obviously been previously dammed and used as a reservoir (old broken dam, disused boathouses etc). The north side (therefore south-facing slopes) did not have an obvious path or access route, but the south side has a public footpath linking to Strontian 12 miles away. The 2008 record NM968631 is along this route, so we started heading up the glen along this path.


Chequered Skipper seen along sheltered stream

Chequered Skipper seen along sheltered stream


Several singletons (4) and a mating pair were present near the stream, along with green hairstreak, small heath, painted lady and small pearl-bordered fritillary. Bracken was present but sparse; bluebells sparse; tormentil and orchid present in reasonable quantity; Molinia plentiful and in good condition; some regenerating birch.


Glen Gour at this point is a very wide valley with small streams coming down from the hills on both sides, and although the area we were investigating had north-east facing slopes, chequered skippers were still present – the opposite side of the valley looked to have even more habitat suitability.


We walked a little way further along the path, but not as far as the 2008 record at NM968631, as we decided to return to the car and look at other sites further along the coast. There is every reason to believe that chequered skipper are present in number in Glen Gour, and any of the sheltered stream gullies provide suitable habitat.


Other records: NM974629 mother shipton moth; NM972630 barred umber, green veined white; NM971631 orange-tip male, drinker larva; many dragonflies were also recorded – 4-spotted chaser, large red damselfly, golden-ringed dragonfly, blue-tailed damselfly – all these have been / will be forwarded to the relevant recorders.


A short way along the road to the south we stopped in a layby to admire some seals hauled out on rocks nearby, and while Ramsay took some photos, I crossed the road and checked out the entrance to a disused quarry – in a very small sheltered spot amongst the birch trees was a male chequered skipper holding territory in what I would not have anticipated was good habitat! This probably indicates that the hills above Glen Gour are well suited to chequered skipper and support a healthy population. GPS reading: NM97564 62265. The tourist couple from Yorkshire sharing the layby were sufficiently impressed (eventually) and took several photos of this special butterfly to show friends and family back home!


Next on the list were the 1990 records from Rubha Ruadh NM966614 and NM957606. We decided to go to the further south of the two records to confirm presence and then carry on down the coast to look for new sites.

Chequered Skipper habitat at Rubha Ruadh

Chequered Skipper habitat at Rubha Ruadh


Two male chequered skipper were displaying territorial behaviour in the foreground of the above picture, GPS reading NM95739 60720. A wet flush heading up to the right and a stream to the left bordered by a fairly wide boggy area coming down the quite steep south-east facing slope provided ideal habitat for skippers and other butterflies and moths. Abundant Molinia and bog myrtle, sparse oak trees, some

bracken and tormentil, and lots of orchids.


Nearby, alongside the stream (GPS reading NM95708 60691) we recorded 4 more chequered skipper, small heath, small pearl-bordered fritillary, green hairstreak, probable pearl-bordered fritillary (no photo but I had a good view with binoculars of one very worn individual), and an argent & sable moth.


We drove further south along the coast, taking the B8043 over the River Tarbert rather than continuing round to Strontian. Although we stopped to investigate several stream courses along this road, we did not find any more chequered skipper. The land here is stocked with sheep, and obviously heavily grazed compared to the hillsides north of the River Tarbert. We did record another mother shipton and some small heath (NM922584), along with a variable damselfly which pounced on a small moth I was looking at with my close-focus binoculars!


Further investigation of gullies and flushes alongside the A861 between Inversanda and Strontian along Glen Tarbert will I’m sure produce many more records of chequered skipper, as would a walk along the length of Glen Gour, but the countryside to the south of the Tarbert seems less hospitable.

Written by Heather Young

Related posts:

  1. Chequered Skipper Survey at Loch Etive 31 May 2009 There are some good butterfly sites to be visited on...
  2. Chequered Skipper Survey, Achintore, Fort William, 2 June 2009 Sallie Jack spent couple of hours at Achintore, near Fort William...
  3. Chequered Skipper spreading along South Loch Etive 2010 was the second year of Chequered Skipper Surveys in...
  4. Report on Chequered Skipper Weekend 30 & 31 May 2009 Arriving at the Glasdrum car park on Saturday 30 May...
  5. Wider Countryside Butterfly Survey Results for three Breeding Bird Survey Squares The Breeding Bird Survey (BBS)  is the British Trust for...

Related posts brought to you by Yet Another Related Posts Plugin.


  1. i love binoculars that are made by Bushnell, they are really very high quality`-:

    Comment by Gabriel Walker — September 30, 2010 @ 6:14 pm

  2. i love to use binoculars when viewing sexy chics from a distance,’-

    Comment by Gate Latch  — October 18, 2010 @ 7:43 am

  3. “”" I am really thankful to this topic because it really gives great information ,*:

    Comment by Cutlery Tray %0B — January 25, 2011 @ 3:44 pm

  4. This kind of report has noticed most of the sights from the writer, the id, however there are still several stating My partner and i nonetheless a few various opinions. Wish can and the writer further connection, furthermore welcome friends and i also talk to other opinions.

    Comment by tiffany charms — August 6, 2011 @ 7:07 am

  5. Hello! This can be my first comment in this article therefore i simply wanted to present a simple shout out and let you know I actually appreciate reading your blog posts. Are you able to advise any other blogs

    Comment by Chad — September 13, 2011 @ 5:23 pm

  6. Variétés de tuiles très bien, mais il existe de nombreux types. Sur le marché que s’ils sont des carreaux de sol de marque célèbres, des briques ou autre tant de gens ordinaires sont rarement distinguer les bons et les mauvais points.

    Comment by nike air max bw pas cher — September 8, 2014 @ 12:33 am

  7. Fille debout sur la perspective pour les autres à réfléchir: vous êtes si simple de se précipiter engager objets, les filles doivent avoir une pression psychologique. Il a constaté que, après un certain temps, si le contact ne vous aime pas, il ne devient pas vous jouer Donc, si vous commencez à mettre hors déterminé à gagner la position, sera essentiellement être de retour bientôt s’ennuyer 2, pour commencer un profil bas.

    Comment by nike air max tn requin — September 8, 2014 @ 12:35 am

  8. Test de closure est compréhension exacte de vocabulaire, cette partie de la difficulté ne devrait pas grande. Mais sans accumulation de vocabulaire adéquat envie de faire ce sujet est également peu probable.

    Comment by lunettes aviator ray ban pas cher — September 8, 2014 @ 12:35 am

  9. K 100 en utilisant un woofer de 6 pouces, basse est tout à fait choquant. Unité de milieu de gamme de 3,5 pouces, et de 0,75 pouces soie tweeter à dôme, nous pouvons dire que le rendement à haute fréquence est très bon, clair et naturel, vous permettant de profiter tout K chanson belle musique amplificateur indépendant gros plan supérieur.

    Comment by lunettes de soleil fausse ray ban pas cher — September 8, 2014 @ 12:36 am

  10. En copie lente de la puissance d’une bombe nucléaire sans orages mauvais Vous essayez, au moment du lancement orage, sommet du nuage coin gauche aligné base centrale de pointeur, donc la base serez remboursé, parce que je tiens à utiliser la Corée du Sud, il peut donc être un Black Hawk dans le dos, certainement la ligne, car la fabrication d’ordinateurs plante était juste six. Compétences plaine pointés.

    Comment by chaussure nike air max pas cher — September 8, 2014 @ 12:36 am


    Comment by Bentos — August 22, 2015 @ 2:58 am

  12. Nike Air Max 2015 Kaufen

    Comment by Bentos — August 22, 2015 @ 3:04 am

  13. New Balance 574 Mujer

    Comment by Bentos — August 22, 2015 @ 3:12 am

  14. New Balance 574 Pas Cher Homme

    Comment by Bentos — August 22, 2015 @ 3:29 am

  15. Nike Free 5.0 Damen

    Comment by Bentos — August 22, 2015 @ 3:34 am

  16. It’s hard to find knowledgeable people about this subject, but you seem like you know whaqt
    you’re taking about! Thanks

    My webpaye -mobile hairdressing peterborough

    Comment by mobile hairdressing peterborough — October 26, 2016 @ 1:27 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

Powered by WordPress