Tuesday, 29 June 2010
The Flame (above) and the Flame Shoulder (below left) have come together to the trap, moths with a similar habit of tucking themselves away as tightly as possible in the nooks and crannies of the eggboxes. This prompts one of the very, very few lighter moments in my moth guide by Townsend, Waring and Lewington (British Wildlife Publishing). The authors remark of the Flame Shoulder: "It flies wildly and has an unfortunate habit of occasionally entering the ears of moth recorders near the light." An ear must be tempting to insects which hunt out small tunnels and grooves. The Flame has one of the best camouflage outfits in the moth world. It folds its wings extremely tightly over its body and the pattern makes the result look exactly like a scrap of twig. It is also one of very few British moths whose width is greater at the head than the tail. The vast majority are the other way round, resembling small pyramids when at rest, with the wings fanning out to form the base.