Sunday, 17 July 2016

Narrow escape

The grandchildren are here to mark Penny's birthday, and also to enjoy the moths. The smaller one is not yet three months and so takes a passive role in the proceedings, but his older sister is a very busy distributor of the eggboxes to safe havens after we've photographed their contents.

"Don't worry, moth. Don't be scared, moth," she says, as we tuck them out of sight of the birds - although the latter seem less inquisitive than they were earlier in the year. I guess that there is plenty of food about in July and many fewer young beaks in the nests.

The granddaughter's enthusiasm nearly meant that I missed a newcomer. She was about to totter off with another box when I glimpsed something unusual and said: "Hang on, I don't think I've seen that before." Sure enough it was a Varied Coronet, an interesting moth because until the late 1940s it was unknown in the UK. It made landfall in the South East and has since spread widely, reaching even my old stamping ground of Yorkshire in the late 1980s.

Like the Marbled Coronet which also calls here occasionally, it is a lovely moth and the one which called was also good-natured, perching on the granddaughter's finger before it took off into the Unknown.

Another couple of arrivals were welcome: the Chinese Character moth above, which mimics a bird dropping and is a little early ; the second generation to which I assume it belongs, because of its fine condition, usually emerges in August. The name comes from the silvery-white squiggle on the grey patch, which resembles a Chinese pictogram though I have yet to discover which one.

And here, above, is a second generation EarlyThorn, I think. I have briefly lent my Moth Bible to a friend and will double-check when I get it back. The thorn is one of the small number of moths which hold their wings up like butterflies at rest rather than folded flat over their backs.

A couple more arrivals from last night: a slightly battered but still discernibly green V-Pug and something too crumpled for me to identify just yet. And to round off, some Wainscots from my backlog, beautifully simple and delicate moths. The granddaughter likes them too but not as much as White Ermines. 

Common Wainscot

And another

Smoky Wainscot with micro friend

And another, on its own

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Martin

I believe the little friend is a Celypha striana