Monday, 11 July 2011

Beautiful visitor

The Swallow-tailed moth. What else can I say? Very familiar but very beautiful, and for once my camera hasn't picked up any reflected glow from the black of the trap bowl. If you know nothing about moths, you may have come across this one. It is drawn to lighted windows on summer nights, as well as to traps like mine.

The Brown China-mark is another lovely moth and Sherlock Holmes would make one deduction about my garden from its presence. "Drag the pond, Watson," he might say, as the pair of them search for the body of one of the fiendish Moriarty's victims. "The pond? My dear Holmes, how can you tell that there is a pond?" "Elementary, Watson. If there is a Brown China-mark moth, there will most certainly be a pond. Its caterpillars feed exclusively on aquatic plants.'

Update: just how good a detective would M.Wainwright really be, though? See comments...


Anonymous said...

Hi Martin...I had one like this last week, but I thought it was a 1378 Phlyctaenia coronata, however we do have a pond, so could have been a brown china mark. Too late now to double check!

MartinWainwright said...

Hi there and sorry for the delay in getting back to say: whoops, I think you may be right. I have to admit that my massive ignorance of micros means that I had not heard of Phlyctaenia coronata, so thanks very much for introducing us. I will put an update on the post.

I am actually getting to like micros more and more, so hopefully this sort of thing won't happen too often.


All warm wishes and thanks again