Sunday, 16 October 2011

A nocturnal negative

I've proved negatives with the trap on chilly nights before, and I thought this morning that I'd done it again. I put the light out in the same place as on Friday night but much later, at around 11.30pm after a night out. This morning, I thought a slumbering caddis-fly was the only occupant.

Even the very last eggbox seemed to be empty, but as I up-ended it, I saw this sweet little sight. Two forelegs securing a small brown moth to the very tip of one of the cones. Our visitors yesterday were asking me why moths like eggboxes, and this is the reason.

It would be nice if the moth were a Brick, a common Autumn flyer, as it landed on a brick, upside down, when I decanted it from the box. I am completely un-nerved by my constant failure to identify arrivals correctly (thanks again to all experts who put me right), but I think that it's actually a Chestnut, although it isn't holding its wings as tightly as the one shown in Waring, Townsend and Lewington.

The Chestnut is a doughty little moth, flying from September through to May. Here it is again, showing the merits of its camouflage, an advantage common to so many moths.


Stewart said...

I see the name link isnt working? I have no idea on that but see -

MartinWainwright said...

Hi S

Will do. I've clocked the Dark Sword-grass all on my own, though, thanks to your prompting.

all v best


MartinWainwright said...

It IS a Chestnut. Charlie Fletcher the All-Knowledgable confirms this. Phew.