7 September 2017
7 September 2017 – Gothic Browns
|Feathered Gothic (Tholera decimalis)|
An intricately patterned moth is the Feathered Gothic, with its strings of white on a delicate, brown ground colour. The broad antennae give it the appearance of being tuned in to information sources about which we know not a thing.
The moth scatters its eggs over grassland and the eggs remain dormant over winter – like the Swift moths do. When the caterpillars hatch they feed at night on hard-bladed grasses.
The moth is common but not often seen unless caught when it comes to light.
|Dark Sword-grass (Agrotis ipsilon)|
Another moth seen only once before in the garden at Shandy Hall – the Dark Sword-grass. This one was in excellent condition. It is an immigrant moth and it hasn’t been confirmed that it ever breeds in this country. It will come to light traps and can be seen in almost every month of the year especially on the coast.
|Square-spot Rustic (Xestia xanthographa))|
None of these three moths is new but they each reflect the fact that Summer is coming to an end. Dark browns and soft browns combine to aid camouflage as the apples ripen and the leaves turn. The Square-spot Rustic is flying in numbers at the moment. This one just looked particularly perfect.
Looking at the list of moths that should be active during this month I see that the Chevron (Eulithis testata) is not uncommon and is yet to be seen in Coxwold. An objective then…