Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Mrs Orange meets my sister

After casting aspersions on the dowdiness of female Orange Swifts compared to their dapper and bright male counterparts, I wasn't surprised to be paid a visit this morning by a Mrs Orange. Mrs Beige, I should perhaps call her, risking further resentment but in the cause of accuracy. You can judge for yourself in the photos above and below. Meanwhile my contrast yesterday with the superior beauty of human females to males is borne out by the exquisite hand above, the property of my younger sister who also stayed with us, with some of her large and lovely family, overnight.

I hoped that the moths would lay on a show for her and they did, with these two little stars below: a brassy, in-your-face Gold Spot or Lempke's Gold Spot seen from various angles and then, contrastingly modest and subtle, that lovely little regular, the Marbled Beauty.

It was great having an assistant at the eggbox examination (Penny has repeatedly ignored advertisements for this position) and we found plenty of other interesting sleepyheads. Among them was this distinctive Plume moth, a family who resemble ultra-skinny T-shirts. This one is the aptly-named Beautiful Plume, known in the classical circles of micro-mothland as Amblyptilia canathadactyla.

Meanwhile there was an oddity yesterday when I was preparing the trap for dusk. A butterfly decided to roost in it.

It's a Comma, a particular one which lives in a very tightly drawn patch of a garden between a small apple tree and a honeysuckle. In sunshine, you will always find it basking here or set it up to speed away in a flash of its lovely russet like a flying fox.

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