Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Mystery eggs

In my last post, I foresaw another night of abundant moths. This proved correct but only in terms of numbers. There was nothing new or especially interesting among the overnight visitors on Monday. Perhaps the novelties took Bank Holiday off to enjoy themselves elsewhere.

Last night was even more unrewarding with under a dozen moths in the eggboxes and all of them familiar - a Swallow Prominent, a Flame Shoulder and several browny-grey bretheren. Mind you, we were back late and I didn't light the lamp until gone ten. The night seemed warmish then but it was quite nippy this morning - all things to discourage May moths.

I do have something to report, however, in that I had second thoughts about the gender of my Puss Moth, featured two posts back, and so confined him or her to a large box with willow leaves inside to see if I could repeat last year's highly enjoyable breeding of Emperor moths from eggs (four pupae from that family still slumber on). I don't think this latest experiment has succeeded but there are eggs on the willow - the yellow ones in the picture above.

They don't look like the browny pellets shown online for Puss Moth eggs and they are in a much larger cluster than the ones, twos or threes which the Puss Moth usually lays. But I will keep an eye on them and try to breed whatever emerges, unless it is something nasty from elsewhere in the insect world.  The mystery is that there didn't seem to be another potential egglayer in the box and I hadn't noticed the eggs when I put the willow inside.

But then, there are a lot of things I don't notice.

In the absence of moths, I thought you might also like to see a couple of our many goldfinches eating their strange diet of thistle seeds. Beautiful and very unBritish birds, in that they are brightly-coloured, they have a monopoly of one of our birdfeeders because no other visitors can get their beaks through the tiny holes.


Countryside Tales said...

Those eggies look like Large Whites to me. I was reading the other day how some Emperor moths can take 4 years to emerge from the pupal state. Amazing. Hope all's well with you.

Countryside Tales said...

But thinking about it logically, I'm not sure they'd lay them on willow.

Mexico Adventure Tour said...

I could learn something from your blog. Thanks for this topic about moths.

Mexico Adventure Tour said...
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