Friday, 25 March 2011

Herald of Spring

When I was young, we had a couple of Triumph Herald cars in succession - one of them an insanely high-powered beast for a small saloon, a six-cylinder Vitesse. When my Dad turned right at the Weetwood junction of Leeds ring road and pressed the accelerator, we virtually took off and only came back to earth at the Lawnswood roundabout.

Anyway, I always like the cars' perky looks (eyelids on the headlamps) and their cheery name. The same applies to this lovely Herald moth which graced the trap last night. The wing colouring is self-evidently fine, including those four white spots, but I've also included a picture below of its natty white legs.

It's an interesting moth, this one. In spite of its excellent condition, it will have spent the winter hibernating - "in an outbuilding," say Waring, Townend and Lewington, adding romantically "or a cave." We don't have any caves but there are plenty of nooks and crannies at Wainwright Towers, although most have been occupied during the freeze by ladybirds (including the invasive Harlequin). Heralds have two generations annually, one in the summer and the second which hatch from their cocoons in August-November and then - like this one - hunker down.

Have you noticed that I'm getting quite handy at doing links? Silver surfer, eh...


Stewart said...

Lovely moth Martin. I have not seen one for many years. I once found two hibernating in our old coal house at a different address. Its one I would love to find here...

worm said...

beautiful moth! I like all those moths like the drinker and the herald with their HR Geiger style heads

Entirely irrelevant, but one of my businesses premises stand directly over the spot in coventry where triumph heralds were built. We have all sorts of enthusiasts turning up there at odd times to see the memorial thingy in the carpark

Banished To A Pompous Land said...

Arent they splendid? I've only found one and that was when I was living in Gloucester. I stumbled over it at work and was stunned by that fantastic metallic wing.

I need to get out and about over here. Its yoyoing between 50 and 70 here now and there should be things to see and bugs to photograph before the mosquitoes and ticks make expeditions too miserable.

Did you have any luck with an ID for that mexican beauty?

MartinWainwright said...

Hi guys!

How to nice to hear from everyone, and so early in the season. Excellent that you are perched above the Herald shrine, Worm. I know a lovely green one in Bloomsbury, London, which was always parked under a tarpaulin in Wakefield Street but seems to have gone on rather a long outing this year. btw shameless plug: anyone interested in cars in a general sort of way might enjoy my books on the Mini and the Morris Minor, especially the latter.
Good luck Stewart, in Herald-searching. I think they're fairly certain to come to light. And sorry, Exile, I've got a bit distracted away from things Mexican so thanks for reminding me and I will check it out asap. It really is a beauty, isn't it? Moths can't compete but to me that is part of their charm.

Bennyboymothman said...

Superb! nearly missed this. They are great moths that can be found peretty much all year round.

MartinWainwright said...

Hi again, Banished

Over the weekend, I checked the Mexican butterfly. I couldn't use Bugguide cos they only do US and Canadian moths, but an excellent guy called Nelson Dobbs told me that it is a Mexican Silverspot, a nice name for a lovely butterfly. His website has lots of lovely pics of US and Mexican butterflies.

All best