Thursday, July 12, 2018

Heatwave micros and a micro macro

I normally struggle to catch micros in the garden trap. I'm not sure why but the number and variety haven't been amazing over the years.

However, this recent hot spell has brought quite a few new ones to the garden including a few lifers for me.

Anarsia innoxiella

Zeiraphera ratzeburgiana

Gypsonoma minutana

Sciotia adelphella
Gypsonoma dealbana

and not a micro but just as small, a Kent Black Arches Meganola albula

Numbers have been spectacular and the numbers of grass moths are beyond count. Long may it continue!

Friday, July 6, 2018

Elsie's Beetle

I love Tanner Beetles Prionius coriarius. They are massive and they look like they mean business. I mean you really wouldn't want to bump into to one at night down a dark alley. It would have your wallet off you soon as wave an antenna at you.

Just look at it....

I have only ever seen them at the RSPB headquarters at the Lodge and all have been around a single building there. My first was back in 2006 and my latest was today. This particular individual was found beneath the MV moth trap that is occasionally run and by the afternoon had crawled up the side of the building and was just sat on a wall.

They are magnificent creatures. What I noticed today was that the eyes can see below and above at the same time. Each eye wraps round the entire side of each head. The two sets of palps were also much in evidence and were constantly moving but not actually touching anything.  

I did try to think of a witty title but it was either leather or old Coronation Street characters. I went with the latter! Quite the resemblance......

Image result for elsie tanner

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Beach buggy

A hot and sunny day on the Suffolk coast found me poking around some brackish pools with muddy margins looking for beetles. I found a fair few but was rather taken with the large numbers of this bug that were pootling about the mud.

I usually ignore bugs apart from the more obvious shieldbugs as there's only one life and it will already take me the next 40 years just to begin to get a grip on the UK's beetle fauna, never mind the hemiptera....

Anyway, I thought these might be 'doable' so brought one home. I got as far as Salididae but then got a little stuck thinking it was a Saldula species.

A quick tweet and the ever helpful Tristan @BritishBugs corrected my mistake and suggested Salda littoralis. One of 3 closely related and similar looking species. However, the pubescent wings (that's hairy to you and me) mean that this one is indeed littoralis.