Wednesday, 8 June 2011
A curious beast today - the Snout moth. No prizes for guessing how it came by its name; it has the most pronounced set of palps of any of its UK brethren. Palps seem to be subject of science's ongoing quest for certain knowledge, but they certainly play an important role as a sensory organ, a sort-of back up for antennae. Why the Snout should have such magnificent ones remains a subsidiary mystery.
It's also one of those moths which have the look of the United States' military hardware. A 'stealth moth' maybe - and that isn't so fanciful when you recall - see earlier posts - that various types of Yellow Underwing know how to send out decoy radar signals to confuse predatory bats. Talking of antennae, there was a lively maybug or cockchafer in the trap this morning and I couldn't resist homing in on its magnificent pair. Shortly after this photoshoot it took off, more like an RAF Hercules than a stealth fighter, and soared away higher than our (quite high) house.