The Emperor's Old Clothes

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Monday 30 September 2019 21:02

I finished an invertebrate survey at Holmwood Common today for the National Trust in Surrey. I was pleasantly surprised by how much stuff I found today but the lep. larvae were the highlights. This is the first time I have see a Purple Emperor larva, so you won't be surprised to see I took a LOT of photos of it. Enjoy!

What a cute little dude! Hard to believe next year this could become our biggest butterfly. If it's lucky!

Nearby I beat some gorse and got this remarkable looking lichen mimic moth larva. At first I thought Brussel's Lace, then a Light Emerald and thanks to Jeroen Voogd on the Caterpillars UK & EUROPE Facebook group he pointed me in the right direction. It's not a geometrid at all. It's Beautiful Hook-tip. A moth I have seen hundreds of times but another larva tick!

And then, a massive Pale Tussock! I couldn't get it to unfurl.
The black stuff on Pale Tussocks is like that Vantablack paint, it reflects no light at all. I was staring into that blackness when I was reminded of the Fast Show...

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