Home > Moths > 10 July 2013 – Oh, Those Promiscuous Moths.

10 July 2013

10 July 2013 – Oh, Those Promiscuous Moths.

We did no trap last night because I’ve taken the day to go exploring the nearby towns of Pickering and Malton. I got to visit the Beck Isle Museum, Pickering Castle, a church with some beautiful murals painted inside, and I think every single thrift shop in Malton, where I bought some nice things in the name of charity. Also, for anyone who’s interested in some winged creatures other than moths, some kestrels are nesting at Pickering Castle in one of the cross windows, and there are a set of binoculars set out for anyone who wants to take a look. The 3 or 4 fledglings are starting to get their adult feathers in. Do mind and give them their space though!

Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis cerasana)

Despite the day off from trapping, I did promise I’d be doing a moth blog a day until we ran out of new moths (though I don’t see that as likely to happen – we’ve been getting plenty of new ones). Today’s moth is the Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis cerasana). We’ve been getting plenty of these lately. They feed on a variety of deciduous trees, fruit trees being one of their favorites. We have several species of apple trees in the garden for them to munch on. Patrick is hoping that since the bees are back this year we will have apples in the Fall to make apple juice with, which we will then sell in the shop.

Pandemos means ‘belonging to the people, common,’ but is also an epithet of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. One interpretation of this involves Aphrodite Pandemos, the manifestation of Aphrodite that rules over the baser carnal love of the common people. The diagonal band on the Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix’s wings could resemble that of an heraldic shield – a mark of illegitimacy, with Aphrodite Pandemos as a source of such affairs. Cerasana has a much more innocent source. Prunus cerasus ‘the dwarf cherry’ is simply one of the larval foodplants of the Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix.

– Post by Jane Wu