Monday, 10 June 2013

Incy wincy

Apologies to passing and unwitting arachnophobes

The moths had another rest last night while I continue to catch up with previous arrivals - and also because of a diversion catching spiders. I like these in a Charlotte's Web sort of way but there's a limit to how many of their webs you can allow indoors. Penny and I are not yet ready to become a couple of Miss Havershams.

Our new operations follow the rediscovery of our electric spidercatcher, one of those strange possessions you forget about and only rediscover in a house move. Here it is in action. It looks like a Star Wars light-sabre and gently sucks spiders into its tube. Then you take them outside and shake them out into their bracing new home.

After Ray's brilliant identifications yesterday of my beetle and earwig, maybe he or another passing expert will identify (a) this spider and (b) its prey, or (c) is it the skin which spiders shed as they grow up? I'd opt for (c). Meanwhile here's the latest newcomer from Friday night's haul in the trap: a prettily patterned Clouded-border Brindle, which occasionally came to see us in Leeds.

There was also this Bright-line Brown-eye and one of those maddening brown moths with square and kidney shapes which I fear I will never sort out (pictured from two angles below). But I keep trying.  I can't see anything in my Moth Bible with those two little black dots, but I'll opt for a Common Quaker. It's interesting, incidentally, to compare its patterning with both the Clouded-border Brindle and the Bright-line Brown-eye and to see how all three have the squares, kidneys and dots in common. Infuriating...


David Shenton said...


Spider first then, it is Pholcus phalangioides, aka the Daddy Long-legs Spider. It is a spider that likes warmth so has more of a southerly distribution in the UK but is no doubt spreading northwards as the climate changes.

Your last moth is Small Square-spot for me.



Martin Wainwright said...

Fantastic once again, Dave!

Can you tell if it's shed its skin btw? The resolution may not be good enough, sorry.

And thanks for the Small Square-spot. I wouldn't have got that from the painting though I see that the small dots are mentioned in WT & L's text

all warmest,