Friday, 9 October 2015

A green thought. Or two.

I was singing the praises of the Green-brindled Crescent the other day. As a result, maybe, it has been turning up regularly in the trap.  Last night it brought a smaller mate with it: a Brindled Green. Here they are together; different sizes but the same beautifully subtle mixture of colours and patterns.

When I Instagrammed these moths, a friend was struck by their similarity to lichen. This is indeed the case; another example of superb camouflage brought about by natural selection and the survival of the lichenist.

The G-bC on my equally lovely green sweater

When we lived in Leeds, Penny had a friend who was a major lichen boffin at the university. His antennae were alerted by lichen wherever he went including, on one occasion, a very interesting example on the wall of a cottage in the Dales. "May I help you?" asked its woman owner frostily but understandably given that she'd just found a middle-aged man scraping bits off her property.

The Brindled Green on an eggbox

"I told her that I was from the Government, checking local walls, and if she didn't hear any more that would mean that everything was in order," he told Penny. "I don't know why I said it. It just came into my head." It also worked, as the woman was satisfied and went back indoors.

A Black Rustic, one of many in the trap at the moment along with the somewhat similar but less dramatic Deep Brown Darts

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