Painted Lady is top in the 2019 butterfly count

The Painted Lady was the most commonly spotted butterfly this summer. (Photo: Andrew Cooper)
The Painted Lady was the most commonly spotted butterfly this summer. (Photo: Andrew Cooper)

Wildlife charity Butterfly Conservation has declared that 2019 is the Year of the Painted Lady.

Its annual Big Butterfly Count has revealed the Painted Lady to be the most commonly sighted butterfly in Scotland this year – a natural phenomenon that happens about once in a decade, when unusually high numbers of this migratory butterfly arrive in the UK.

Participants spotted 141,649 Painted Ladies as part of the survey, making up more than half of all the butterflies counted.

The Small Tortoiseshell and the Peacock were second and third, with 14,810 and 13,993 sightings respectively.

Richard Fox of the Butterfly Conservation, said: “The Painted Lady obviously stole the show this summer, taking the top spot in Scotland.

“But 2019 has also been the most successful Big Butterfly Count in its 10-year history, with twice as many people taking part in Scotland than ever before, and a record number of counts being submitted.”

Richard added: “Last year the Small Tortoiseshell experienced its worst summer in the history of the Big Butterfly Count, so to see its numbers jump up this year is a big relief.”