Lockdown Diary: Thursday 25.6.20

Ed and I got up at 4.30 this morning to ‘process’ the moths from the moth traps. It wasn’t the enormous catch I was hoping for on such a warm night. However, we did have about 50 species (and about 150 individuals). The best of the bunch were a single ...

Ed and I got up at 4.30 this morning to ‘process’ the moths from the moth traps. It wasn’t the enormous catch I was hoping for on such a warm night. However, we did have about 50 species (and about 150 individuals). The best of the bunch were a single Privet Hawkmoth and a couple of Elephant Hawkmoths, which are very pretty. The Privet Hawk was very active when we arrived, and was flapping around waking up all the other moths; so we released it straight away. Here is one of the Elephants. Great moths.


Elephant Hawkmoth, our garden, Peterborough, Cambs, 25.6.20
Other moth highlights included a few Swallowtail Moths, a Knot Grass, and Meal Moth (which I don’t remember seeing before). But even more impressive was a huge brown longhorn beetle, which I think is the pine-loving species Arhopalus rusticus.


Arhopalus rusticus, our garden, Peterborough, Cambs, 25.6.20
Also, while we were sitting around enjoying the sun warming our bones, a dragonfly landed high up in one of our hazel trees, to ‘take the sun’. Dragonflies are rare in our garden these days, but his turned out to be a Black-tailed Skimmer, a species I have only seen once before in our garden (in 20-odd years!). So, there are indeed benefits to getting up absurdly early…

Black-tailed Skimmer, our garden, Peterborough, Cambs, 25.6.20