Monday, 17 July 2017

Patience rewarded

I boasted yesterday that I was patient enough to wait for a Yellowtail to show the reason for its name, and today my patience was rewarded. For the third week running, there were several of the species in the eggboxes, all of them initially hunched as shown below, with any colour other than white - plus a couple of grey spots - modestly out of sight.

I have found from experience that teasing them with fragments of eggbox or twigs merely annoys them and sets them creeping about prior to flying away altogether. With this one, it seemed to be a simple, brusque movement of the box which caused the tail to shoot up.  Anyway, there it is - a male-only habit, not surprisingly you may think, and an enjoyable one to see.

Flying the yellow flag doesn't last long. I had time to take only a couple of shots with my iPad Mini before the tail was on its way back into hiding - pic of this above. Meanwhile, I was distracted and delighted by the presence of one of the Kitten moths in the trap for the first time this year: the beautifully coloured and patterned Poplar Kitten below. Like the parental-sounding Puss Moth and the rarer Feline, the Kittens all have thick, strokeable 'fur' on their heads, a feature which is generally reckoned to give the family its cat-related names.

Otherwise, I spent some time pondering whether this footman moth might be something unusual because of the folding crease down the centre of its back, as opposed to the normal resting posture of the Common Footman shown in the third picture below, or the spindlier Scarce Footman in the fourth picture. But I came to the conclusion that it was another Common one, just with the wings unusually tucked away.

Further visitors included this fine Silver Y, a Bloodvein (well-named) and the little Rosy Minor at the bottom. A good (and warm) night.

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