4 August 2020
4 August 2020 – Botticelli Moth
Phillip Christos Zeller (1808 – 33) was a distinguished German professor and microlepidopterist. He gave names to 186 new species of moths and was the author (along with H T Stainton, Heinrich Frey and J W Douglas) of the 13-volume monograph The Natural History of the Tineina. His collection of moths is now in the Natural History Museum in London. This little moth was one that was named by Zeller. Blastos means a shoot and basis a step or pedestal upon which something stands. These two words refer to the antenna where a pecten (or scallop shape) can be seen. Somewhat the other end of the scale from Sandro Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus. And why not? I tried to identify this moth from the little shoot-like labial palps curling upwards (they can be seen if you click on the photograph) but the illustration in the Field Guide is from above the insect rather than from the side.
If the rain holds off there will be another trap this evening…