Sunday, 23 July 2017

New Moths

Green Arches, Anaplectoides prasina.  Crowborough, 24 June 2017.
Green Arches, Anaplectoides prasina.  Crowborough, 24 June 2017.
I have been seeing a lot of new moths in my garden in Crowborough, some that I didn't see in my Hayes garden, some that I have never seen anywhere before.  Here are some of those that are quite new to me.

This Green Arches is excellent!  It's a woodland species and a Noctuid, and there are not many green Noctuids.

Ypsolopha scabrella.  Crowborough, 10 July 2017.
Ypsolopha scabrella.  Crowborough, 10 July 2017.
Ypsolopha scabrella is a micromoth, according to the rather arbitrary division of moths into micro and macro.  Its profile and especially those scale tufts on its back make it easy to identify.  Apples and hawthorns are the preferred food of its larvae, and there's no shortage of those.

Pebble Prominent, Notodonta ziczac.  Crowborough, 17 July 2017.
Pebble Prominent, Notodonta ziczac.  Crowborough, 17 July 2017.
Pretty Pebble Prominent, with the rather wonderful scientific name Notodonta ziczac, is another new one for me.  It's not scarce, but a lot of moths are quite local in their habits and don't cover the whole of an area.

Yellow-tail, Euproctis similis.  Crowborough, 20 July 2017.
Yellow-tail, Euproctis similis.  Crowborough, 20 July 2017.
Again, the Yellow-tail isn't scarce, I just haven't come across it before.  This one is a male, and doesn't have a yellow tip to its abdomen like the females.

Silver Hook, Deltote uncula.  Crowborough, 20 July 2017.
Silver Hook, Deltote uncula.  Crowborough, 20 July 2017.
This Silver Hook, however, is rather scarce and hasn't been recorded close to Crowborough in the past, at least according to the records I have seen.  The UKMoths site says: "Occupying marshes, fens and acid bogs, this species has a scattered distribution over much of Britain, but is largely absent from most of central England."  Well, I do not live in a marsh, fen or acid bog, but on the other hand, nor do I live in a wood and I see plenty of woodland species.  Perhaps the recent rainstorms have moved a few individuals from their home territories.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Colourful Verges

Bird's-foot Trefoil, Lotus corniculatus.  Chapell Green, Crowborough, 3 June 2017.
Bird's-foot Trefoil, Lotus corniculatus.  Chapell Green, Crowborough, 3 June 2017.
Walking around Crowborough in June and July I have seen many colourful flowers in the roadside verges and garden borders.  Most are common in the wild, like this Bird's-foot Trefoil.  Many are actually garden escapes.   They all brighten the roadside.  Here are some of the wildlings.

Fox and Cubs, Pilosella aurantica.  Gordon Road, Crowborough, 3 June 2017.
Fox and Cubs, Pilosella aurantica.  Gordon Road, Crowborough, 3 June 2017.
This vivid Fox-and-Cubs is plentiful.  I enjoy it partly because I only saw a few specimens back in Hayes.   Now, this even comes up in my lawn. 

Green Alkanet, Pentaglottis sempervirens. Whitehill Road, Crowborough, 10 June 2017.
Green Alkanet, Pentaglottis sempervirens. Whitehill Road, Crowborough, 10 June 2017.
The blue-flowered and very vigorous Green Alkanet is quite scarce here, whereas it was everywhere in Hayes.

Great Willowherb, Epilobium hirsutum.  Goldsmith's Recreation Ground car park, Crowborough, 8 July 2017.
Great Willowherb, Epilobium hirsutum.  Goldsmith's Recreation Ground car park, 8 July 2017.
Great Willowherb needs a bit more space, and is happy here in the rough ground beside a car park. 

Common Mallow, Malva sylvestris.  Outside Crowborough library, 8 July 2017.
Common Mallow, Malva sylvestris.  Outside Crowborough library, 8 July 2017.
Common Mallow has lesser requirements, and has sprouted here in an untended patch of concrete paving outside the library.

Tufted Vetch, Vicia cracca.  Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 7 July 2017.
Tufted Vetch, Vicia cracca.  Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 7 July 2017.
Tufted Vetch likes a less busy spot.  Here it is scrambling through the long grass and brambles under a half-wild roadside hedgerow.

Yarrow, Achillea millefolium.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough,13 June 2017.
Yarrow, Achillea millefolium.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough,13 June 2017.
Yarrow is scattered in the short grass everywhere.  You can see some of its leaves among the Bird's-foot Trefoil flowers at the top of this post.  This plant is in my own lawn.  There are yellow and red flowered varieties of this plant in the garden centres at this time of year, and it's easy to see where they would thrive.

Also in this shot are the tiny yellow flowers of Lesser Trefoil, sometimes regarded as a garden pest.  Here, it is vigorous at the start of the year but is now dying back, at the end of its growth cycle and probably hastened on its way by fungal infections, of which I have seen a lot.  But it will be back next year.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Eyed Hawk-moth

Eyed Hawk-moth, Smerinthus ocellata.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 3 July 2017.
Eyed Hawk-moth, Smerinthus ocellata.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 3 July 2017.
This is an Eyed Hawk-moth.  It's quite a large moth and has the sculptural wing shape when at rest that is typical of most of the hawk-moths.  The colour scheme is elegant and sober. But why, you might ask, is it called "eyed?"

Eyed Hawk-moth, Smerinthus ocellata.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 3 July 2017.
Eyed Hawk-moth, Smerinthus ocellata.   Luxford Lane, Crowborough, 3 July 2017.
... Because, when it's disturbed, it does this!