12 June 2018

We went to Apedale in the early moring, around 10 o’clock. It was sunny with a few clouds in there.


We saw loads of orchids, including this one, which was about 30cm tall:

orchid 1

It’s very hard to tell common marsh orchids apart, so we’re not even going to try that! orchid 2

This orchid has some pretty spotty leaves about it:

orchid 3

This orchid was providing a rich nectar source for Burnet moths today:

orchid with burnet moth

It was a big spectacle of Burnet moths today. They were hatching in their hundreds or their thousands today. The field was absolutely covered in them!

lots of moths on the fence

On the fence we could see lots of newly hatched moths, empty chrysalises, and some moths that didn’t quite make it out of the chrysalis.

Danny thinks the Burnet moth is almost the moth equivalent of the ladybird, because they both have spotted wings.

burnet moth on fence post
Burnet moth on fence post
burnet moths mating
The mating season has sprung! These two Burnets are definitely going for it!
burnet moths on ragged robin
The Ragged Robin flowers provide an important nectar source for the Burnets.

You can see how important the Ragged Robin is for the moths, from this little video Mum took:

Lots of people get Burnet moths and Cinnabar Moths confused. Here’s a Cinnabar we also saw today. The main way to tell the difference is that the Cinnabar has stripes and fewer spots than the Burnet moth:


The other moth we saw today was a Clouded Border (Lomaspilis marginata). We’ve never seen this kind of moth ever before! It is a bad photo because it fluttered off before we could focus.

Clouded border moth

Mum thought this next insect was a strange buggy thing, and was very surprised to find out that it is a cranefly (Nephrotoma flavipalpis):

cranefly 1

The cranefly has very long limbs, carefully arranged to fit on the plant’s stem:

cranefly 2

It’s quite hard to identify hoverflies, but Dad thinks it’s a Migrant Hoverfly (Eupeodes corollae):

migrant hoverfly maybe

Mum spotted this funny little bug on a bramble leaf. It is a Leptoterna bug, either L. dolabrata or L. ferrugata, which are very hard to tell apart. It is in its nymph stage:

Leptoterna dolabrata or ferrugata

We’ve had Greater Stitchwort before, here is its smaller relative, the Lesser Stitchwort (Stellaria graminea):

Lesser Stitchwort

We did meet a few dogs, most of them we didn’t get the names of, but Dad thinks one of them is called Pippa.

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