Sunday, 17 July 2011

Insects on a Mountjoy stroll

If you are based on the Science Site, a 30 minute lunchtime stroll around the sloping field that stretches from the Mountjoy reservoir to the road that leads up to Mountjoy and Biological Sciences is well worth the effort.  Right now, there is a wonderful blaze of colour from the rosebay willow herb.

On the way round, take a little time to stand and stare as the insect life is very active at the moment, especially if you pick a warm still day. Butterflies readily seen include the ringlet (upper surface and underwing shown below)

the meadow brown

and this skipper

The burnet moths are hatching out too.  Unusually, this beautiful moth is a day flier (and one of the most poisonous moths in Britain).

If you search carefully you might find the elegant empty cocoon spun by the burnet caterpillar on a flimsy grass stem.

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