Monday, 19 April 2010

Rookery nook

Rain stopped trapping last night, but Nature is exuberantly busy elsewhere in the garden. And indeed the house. We came into the kitchen to find a crow (no it's a jackdaw - see Steve Thorpe's helpful comment) had come down the chimney, somehow avoided death in our fake flame gas fire, and got into the usual state of panic on the windowsill. We eventually ushered it out of the back door with cooing noises and a broom. Much as I like birds, I wish the crows (sorry, jackdaws) wouldn't nest on top of our chimneys. I pot at them ineffectively with my sons' old BB gun; but maybe the horrors experienced by this one bird may put them off, if it has the means to describe or at least communicate the nature of its awful time.

Meanwhile, our customary ladybrid infestation continues apace. This red-on-black one had chosen a dangerously intimate place to explore. I'll leave you to guess what the porcelain background portends. Ladybirds are everywhere in our house overwinter; lift a window and ye shall find them, unjam a door and they are there. Aphids beware!

Finally a bit of beast from Jessie in Borneo. I've still not had time to start identifying the Jessmoths, but would that the UK had some like this. (Steve helps here too - it looks as though it's an Indonesian Moon Moth - many thanks S!)


David said...

Looks like the dreaded Harlequin ladybird :-(

sarah meredith said...

Isn't it interesting about ladybirds - or ladybugs, as we call them this side? When I was young (a millenium ago), ladybugs were so uncommon that if you happen to find one, you could wish on it! Now they come inside at the farm by the battalions and in fact, when we arrive at the house after having not been there for a while, it looks like there has been a battle to the death between the ladybugs and the cluster flies who apparently live in the walls. There is a lot of lore up there of people who have concocted their own fly-killing potions which they've then poured around the foundations of their house, but according to the guy who worked on our old house, they are indestructible. Even the newest of houses, constructed of brand new planks, will find flies all over the place come early spring. And I love seeing Jessie's wild moths from Borneo!! XXS

MartinWainwright said...

Hi both!

I fear it may be a Harlequin. I've emailed a Harlequin monitoring blog to ask them to opine (and also whether I should flush...)

Sarah, did you know about the Great British Harlequin Drama? Almost on the scale of the volcano. Harlequins are invaders from your mighty nation and they may be making life a bit tricky for some of our native species. Tell Barrack!


Anonymous said...

Quite glad these are native to Borneo.... and not found in the welsh hills!!

I will keep my eyes open for some welsh varieties so that you can add them to your wonderful collection.


Anonymous said...

Hi Becky - I'd be really pleased to learn about Welsh moths - and for telling me that the Welsh for moth is 'Pilli palla or nos' . I'll try that next time I'm in Snowdonia... xM

Steve Thorpe said...

Hi Martin,

Just to be pedantic...your bird is neither Crow nor Rook, it's a Jackdaw.

Happy mothing!!


Steve Thorpe said...

After a bit of a search on Google, I reckon this moth is an Indonesian Moon Moth?

Anonymous said...

Thanks very much Steve! By the way, I only got ONE moth in the trap last night (a Hebrew Character). I'm sure it's the cold. Or maybe the volcano. I'll amend the blog in a mo. All v best, M