Today has been warm and sunny and despite the shrinking heaps of dirt snow you could almost believe that winter is over (rain forecast for tomorrow, though – don’t get too excited).

The garden has been busy – the Snowdrops have really come into their own and we received visits from the pre-Easter Bunny (a very timid fellow), from the first returning Song Sparrow (we will get better photographs in a few days) and the first – and mots unexpected – butterfly of the year.

Insects of all sorts are hard to identify with precision, but this is either a Hoary Comma (Polygonia gracilisi) or a very close relative.  These are widespread across the raea but not common – they overwinter as adults – doubtless why we are seeing this one now – and only have one brood of eggs in July odr a little later which means this fellow has a lot of fluttering to do and a lot of evading of predatory birds.  Lovely insect, however, and anew species for our garden insect list.

Snowdrops

Snowdrops

Snowdrop detail - note the inner three 'tepals'

Snowdrop detail - note the inner three 'tepals'

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Rabbit

Rabbit

Hoary Comma butterfly (or close relative)

Hoary Comma butterfly (or close relative)