Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Shining bright

The trap is mended!  Already! All thanks to the illustrious Kevin Hill, the world's best electrician whose contacts I can always furnish to readers within electrical reach of Leeds. Thanks very much, Kevin.

In his honour, on the first dry night for ages, this beautiful moth arrived: the Burnished Brass. It isn't rare and comes to the trap every year, but it always surprises and delights me. The metallic sheen is the result not of electricity but reflection from scales tilted to use the light. As you study the moth from different angles, the sheen comes and goes, fades and glows.

Talking of sheen, I was at an Open University degree ceremony in Gateshead on Saturday and the organisers showed me their Magic Box - actually a large red crate - which had all the essential equipment for handling ceremonial emergencies. It included a spraycan of Mr Sheen, presumably to buff up fading regalia.

The OU is one of the best UK institutions created in my lifetime; in fact probably the best. Graduates' stories at the ceremony of endeavour, perseverance and family support were inspirational. The Burnished Brass is a suitable moth with which to celebrate their lustre. Let's leave it with a final view of its strange and wonderful tufted headgear. A Roman or Greek warrior among moths.


Jane said...

glad your trap is working again. hope you get lots of lovely moths tonight.

MartinWainwright said...

Thanks very much Jane. Is it a poor season in Ireland? The weather seems to have caused havoc here.

All warm wishes (and it is warm just at the moment...)