Thursday, 11 July 2013

Rip van Moth

Do moths buzz about all night like busy human beings during the day? Is their life one of constant nectar-sipping, mating and bat evasion? Not judging by this sleepy Poplar Grey which is my new record-holder for a really long kip.

I discovered it slumbering next to the smart, darker Coronet on the right, plus an attendant micro, when I went out to the trap at around 7am the other day. Normally I'm careful to tuck all the moths out of the way in vegetation after inspecting them, to keep them safe from birds, but I sometimes forget about the ones which have chosen to doze on the trap itself. So when I went back at 8pm to sort the light out for another night, the PG was still there, slightly differently positioned but still dead to the world.

I took another picture, including my fancy Swatch as evidence (although it isn't the easiest thing, telling the time from it). Then it was my turn to sleep; but next morning at 7am, there was the Poplar Grey still in place, though slightly differently positioned again, this time on the holder of Mr & Mrs Robinson's famously simple but effective rain shield for their patent moth trap. Here it is above, with a little micro pal, Eudonia mercurella, keeping it company.

While on the subject of grey moths, I am still trying to puzzle out this last one, which I have provisionally and rather sadly entitled 'Grey Moth'. Is it a Knot Grass? Or a Sycamore? Or, embarrassingly, even another Poplar Grey?


Ray Walton said...

Hi Martin

Having cross-referred your dilemma with our presumed mutual reference books, I am leaning towards a Sycamore?

For your information, and perhaps the benefit of others; My small 'modern day' Moth Reference Library consists of:
Concise Guide to the Moths of Britain and Ireland - Townsend, Waring & Lewington
Field Guide to the Moths of Great Britain and Ireland - Waring, Townsend & Lewington
Field Guide to the Moths of Great Britain and Ireland - Sterling, Parsons & Lewington
British Moths and Butterflies (a photographic guide) - Chris Manley
I have other older tombs, but Richard Lewington's Illustrations in those above are just brilliant

Ray (Stokelymort)

MartinWainwright said...

Thanks so much Ray, and that's an invaluable list of other books. I will save up.

Isn't the weather LOVELY!

all warmes - hope your holiday went well