Hello, I'm a student on work placement with Butterfly Conservation and carried out many Large Heath surveys on bogs in the Central and Forth region last year. So I thought I would share some of my experiences.
The bogs had very different species compositions. Some had lots of Cotton grass - like Blair Drummond Moss - while others had a covering of the lovely smelling Bog myrtle, such as Collymoon Moss.
Shirgarton Moss (on the right) had the most amazing numbers of Large Heath butterflies, we saw roughly 850+ Large Heath in 45 minutes and surely would have seen more if we had surveyed for longer.
We, me and a few other students, surveyed 126 bogs for the 'Forth Naturalist and Historian' (a local Stirling Journal). Below are some photos showing the differences between bogs, large or small. We saw many different species on these bogs.
Unfortunately on the majority of the sites we surveyed Large Heath were absent but had been seen in the past. However we saw many other interesting fauna such as the Manchester Treble Bar moth, Ospreys ( I think we saw 9 in total and 2 nests), Red Deer and even Mountain hare.
Surveying all of these bogs throughout the summer was one of the most adventurous and entertaining things me and the other students have done.
We had many incidents, such as the time where one of the other students was chasing after a Large Heath, but then all of a sudden disappeared through the bog - on 3! different occasions and had to be pulled out with a rope twice and a butterfly net on another occasion. We also managed to get lost a few times and had great fun navigating some of the ditches in the bogs.
Below is a slide show of the many fauna and flora we saw as we surveyed each bog from cranberry's and clouded buff moths to rarer plants such as bog rosemary.