120 members of the wildlife charity, Butterfly Conservation enjoyed a very successful Members’ Day at the Battleby Conference Centre on Saturday 30 October. A presentation was made to Mr Duncan Davidson as Outstanding Volunteer of the Year, and the audience warmly congratulated Mr Roy Leverton, who was given a Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his many years devoted to the recording and study of moths and butterflies.
The event also celebrated the significant milestone of 1000 individual members in Scotland, with a presentation to Mr Tom Delaney of Lasswade, the 1000 th member.Mr Maurice Avent, Chairman of Butterfly Conservation presented the awards saying: “I am thrilled by the enormous enthusiasm shown for butterflies and moths in Scotland, reflected in some of our fastest membership growth in the UK”.
Participants came from all over Scotland, from Thurso to Peebles, and Lochalsh to Kirkcudbright, to compare notes on the butterfly and moth highlights of the year, and to learn how climate change is affecting their distribution. There was also a talk about the culmination of the hugely successful Moths Count project, which for the first time will produce maps of all the UK’s moths.
The day was even rounded off by a ghost story, a fascinating talk by Mr Nick Picozzi on the behaviour of the Ghost Moth, whose males form mating groups or ‘leks’ akin to capercaillie and black grouse, from which the females choose a mate.
Those attending were also able to go to workshops on digital photography, rearing caterpillars at home, and an introduction to the bizarre world of micro-moths.
The star attraction of the day however was probably the spooky Death’s Head Hawk-moth, which had been caught a few days earlier on a North Sea oil rig!
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