Painted Lady on Clapham Common

Clapham Common’s new wildflower haven is bursting into bloom and volunteers watering the beds have spotted Painted Lady caterpillars feeding in the thistles.

The caterpillar’s colours can be highly variable, but the red bases to their spines behind the head are very distinctive – click here for more information on the butterfly. This species of butterfly has migrated from France in recent years and have bred in the south east of England due to warmer summers. The caterpillars will pupate shortly and then hatch two weeks later.

If you too would like to help water our wildflower haven there are volunteer sessions every Saturday starting at 10am. Please meet at the area between The Spinney and Bandstand Beds alongside Windmill Drive. Watering is by hose, bowser and watering cans.