I had a happy time chasing this beautiful moth this morning, humming the old Stones song Ruby Tuesday - with that incredibly low note on 'She would never say where she came from...'
My quarry was a Ruby Tiger, common enough here (as it was in Leeds) but not so easy to photograph at its best. When resting, it hunches up and presents a largely dull, brown appearance - although, as always with moths, if you inspect more closely, the 'brown' turns out to be something much subtler; in this case a satiny sheen with traces of the red which account for the species' name.
You spot them when the moth is in your hand, or eggbox, but capturing them on camera is another matter. Quite apart from the moth's reluctance to show them unless scared and on the run, my camera skills lead to the focus being baffled by the subtle distinctions between tawny, ruby and the other, pleasantly port-related, colours. I went back three times to the eggboxes, after each lot of pictures proved blurred, before finally using my iPad Mini to get the ones above. Appropriately, the green is not Astroturf or wallpaper but the iPad's case.
This was indoors and the moth rapidly warmed up and started scurrying about, as above. Eventually it took wing but fortunately returned to settle briefly on a one of our many pieces of Duplo, below, allowing me to take the picture at the top of the post.