Wednesday, 17 June 2015

May the Force be...Eeeek!

There was definitely a Star Warsy feel to the trap this morning, with this somewhat battered but still imposing male Puss Moth appearing to have infamous designs on a couple of interestingly different female Ghost moths.

The paler of the two, with the much less distinct pinky patterning, isn't illustrated in the Moth Bible and I've not had one here before. But colour and pattern variation is infamously common among moths.

I've been bewailing this problem with the minors over the last few posts - the fact that it is all but impossible to tell the various species apart without resorting to dissection (not for me, ugh). On size grounds, though - cos it was very small - I'll hazard a guess that this is a Rosy Minor. Update: Trent corrects me. It's a Middle-barred Minor, albeit somewhat rosy in hue.

The big fish in the trap, meanwhile, was my second Privet Hawk of the season. The last one came on the morning I had to scoot off to Leeds and although I had time to impress my granddaughter with it, I then liberated it in the gloomy depths of a shrub. This morning, I had a bit more time to mess around and so I repeated my gentle taunting of the Eyed Hawk with this, its much bigger cousin.

The results were the same. A quick, muscular flash of those warning colours. It would be a brave robin that tackled this.


Russia Adventure Tour said...

Love it grows gradually. Thanks for sharing!

Trent Duval said...

Martin, your Rosy Minor looks more like a Middle-barred.
If you want to spirit a Ghost Moth or two into my trap, feel free.
They are rarely encountered here, maybe 3 in 6 years of garden trapping.

Anonymous said...

Thanks very much, Trent. I think you're right as ever and I'll update. I'll try to persuade the Ghosts. I'd dearly like one of these Striped Hawk moths which seem to have come over from the Continent to visit me. Much appreciate all your help

all best wishes


Martin Wainwright said...

Sorry, Trent, I must have clicked an odd button because the last comment wasn't meant to be anonymous all v best M