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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Herald

Here are some details for the moth shown in my previous post.
The moth was seen at rest inside the buildings on a visit to Somerton Mill.

2469 The Herald Scoliopteryx libatrix
(Linnaeus, 1758)
Wingspan 40-45 mm. Web site for identification of moth.

Quite a spectacular species, this colourful moth overwinters as an adult, and as a result, can be one of the last species to be seen in one year, and one of the first in the next. It is also sometimes found hibernating inside barns and outbuildings.

The adults are attracted to both light and sugar, and the species is fairly common and well distributed over much of Britain, though it is less common in Scotland.

The larvae feed on willow (Salix) and poplar (Populus).

Bullrushes in the stream feeding the mill.

View of the Somerton Mill from across the stream and gardens.