Sunday, 2 October 2011

Autumn and all that jazz

First of all, thanks to Tony Morris for kindly allowing me to pinch this picture of a Pale Tussock moth from his Flickr collection. On 22nd, 25th and 30th May this year there were singletons of this species in my moth trap, but for some reason I didn't photo them. The story now continues...

This thing appeared on the side of the compost heap on Friday afternoon, and a quick check in Chinery identified it as a Pale Tussock caterpillar, which we assume was looking for somewhere to pupate
Spectacular and beautiful, isn't it?

Lately in my trap have been these autumn species, first an L Album Wainscot, possibly a migrant, possibly not, maybe you can make out the white "L" in it's wing
 Dark Sword Grass next, not common in my garden, and impossible to see on a dead branch or in the frass under the hedge - well, it should have been, but as Tony pointed out, this is a Blair's Shoulder Knot, one of 3 this autumn, and a new one for me. As for the Sword Grass, the pic is in a folder on my computer somewhere, but I can't find it!!

Difficult to get more autumnal than this Autumnal Rustic, I reckon

This one is a Brick, presumably the colour leads to it's name 

This one is a Large Wainscot, about an inch long, and therefore large by wainscot standards

And now to day fliers, like thisSiver Y, which was one of two in the trap this morning

Later in the afternoon, as the sun was getting low in the sky, this Hummingbird Hawkmoth appeared at the Verbena bodensae flowers as we all sat at dinner  - there has been one around all the last week

Still on the subject of Autumn, finches are beginning to dominate the species being caught in the mist nets, and flying up the South Foreland Valley. Redpoll, like this one, Siskin, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, and even 3 Crossbill this morning, and a possible single Woodlark

Later, about half-past One, an Osprey appeared from the South (must have flown directly over Tony Morris' garden!) and went purposefully off towards Ringwold, not all that high up either - sorry Tony


  1. Hi Peter, your Dark Sword Grass is in fact at Blair's Shoulder Knot. A Dark Sword Grass is very much more like a larger version of a Turnip, bit with the arrow heads,

  2. Do you get many bricks Peter? I've had one so far this year, but only six in the 10 years I've been here.