Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Just when you thought...

This always happens. I was saying to Penny only this morning: "I think I'll pack up the trap for this season soon." Then I went down to the eggboxes and - shazoom! Moth after moth.

Maybe to celebrate the result of the US election (and what a relief that was), this whole flight of December Moths has arrived a month early during a night which was blowy but relatively warm. Truth to tell, they can be on the wing from October onwards so their name has always been a little misleading. But aren't they fine? Much more striking in their fur coats than their modest counterpart the November Moth whose grey tunic you can observe several posts back. Meanwhile just look at the antenna on this one.

Then there was this glorious Feathered Thorn, below. And isn't it interesting that it has perched on a similarly-coloured orange patch on the blue eggbox?  One day, I will assemble all the examples I have of this apparent knowledge of a suitable 'camouflage' background (including the many instances of moths snoozing on black-and-white 'dazzle' barcodes) and ask an expert what they think about them.

Finally, two familiar but always welcome regulars at this time of the year, both narrow and angular as some sort of high-performance fighter plane. First, a Blair's Shoulder-knot, which colonised the Isle of Wight as recently as 1951 and only reached the Scottish border in 1996.  And then an Angle Shades. I could look at this moth for hours. Its attendant swarm of tiny flies seem to agree.


petoskystone said...

That Angle Shades is fascinating!

MartinWainwright said...

Hi there - fabulous isn't it? I'm sure it's been studied by camouflage people, both for the colours and pattern and the extraordinary wing shape - perfect for hiding among autumn leaves. This one is a bit faded but a little further back on the blog there's a fresher one showing how its colours include that great rarity in UK moths, some blue. All warm wishes, M

Stokelymort said...

Your Feathered Thorn, having no feathered antennae, which the Male has, says it's a Female!
Whilst I will continue to follow your blog, for even the smallest crumb of mothy things, I am Snuggled up in the comfort of my study, ready to sit out another miserable winter.