"For now we are young let us lay in the sun and count every beautiful thing we can see" Neutral Milk Hotel.

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Narrow-bordered five-spot burnet moths at Holme

'Five-spot' burnets are usually numerous in late spring at the west end of Holme NWT and have long been assumed, on adult patterning, to be narrow-bordered. Identifications based on adult patterning are no longer considered safe, so we searched for many hours in 2015 to find caterpillars, which are very distinctive, but found neither larvae nor adults ! A five minute search this morning revealed 3 full-grown larvae and 5 pupal cases. The caterpillars were on Meadow Vetchling, the foodplant of this species (5 spot burnets eat Bird-foot Trefoil) and the pupal cases were at the top of rushes (5 spots apparently place their very low in the vegetation and are much more difficult to find).
The adult was photographed on 21st June 2014 (presumed to be this species); larvae and pupal cases found today, 5th June 2016

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