What a Fantastic Day! Both weather and wildlife wise!!!

Added new bird to HC Year List. A Moorhen on the Island Pool takes my total to 57.

Started the day with my usual check of the Wardens Lights. Good Numbers of moths this morning. Added two new moths to my list. One of them spotted by Cobs the warden. So thanks Cobs for this Small Quaker. It was small as well, probably the reason I did not see it. Should probably wear my glasses…


2nd new moth to my list was this nicely marked Red Chestnut…


With the Emperor Moth pheromones packed in the car, I headed off to Goldie Heath. This was the place I photographed several Emperor Moth Caterpillars last year. So I thought this would be a good place to start. More about my Emperor Moth quest later on.

While on Goldie Heath, and watching the lure, I spotted this absolutley stunning little shieldbug. It’s correct name is Blue Shieldbug (Zircrona caerulea). I must be honest here…my photos do not do this creature justice. This Shielbug is now my favourite Shieldbug that I have ever seen. I forgot to mention it dropped off the heather onto my hand while setting the lure up. But I did place it back on the heather…bottom photo…

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The Jays today were making a right noise, and they always seemed in good numbers. Up to ten at times…

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While on Goldie Heath noted a Large White Butterfly, new this year. Did not get photo, it was flying through. But did manage another Comma photo…


Now for another highlight while I was on Goldie Heath. Like the Green Tiger Beetle the other day, this is another Invertebrate ticked off my wish list. All the years walking past the Glow-Worm sign, and checking out the heather. I’ve never actually seen one. I would like to point out I think the Cunning marks out of 10 should be downgraded for this one.  It was not cunning at all walking across this Autumn Leaf. But it did make it back onto the heather eventually…


Still no sign of Emperor Moth near the lure, but just below it, there did land this beautiful Tawny Mining Bee…


After over 3 hours of waiting for an Emperor Moth to be attracted to my lure, I finally gave up on Goldie Heath. I really must admit I was really disappointed. Especially after seeing Mike Williams do so well with a lure in Worcestershire only yesterday.

On the way back I passed the Island Pool, and got number 57 for the HC year list. But this Moorhen showed me what it thought of having its photo taken…


Now for the real purpose of spending 3 waisted hours on Goldie Heath. I think I will start this off, by showing the things I actually tried with the lure on Goldie Heath. I even tried a pair of the wife’s tights (clean ones of course) to put lure in…

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The above photos, showing I was not really sure what I was doing with my first ever lure, I also had in the back of my mind, perhaps where they lay their eggs, isn’t necessarily the place the Emperor Moths emerge from. So now for plan B. I had actually seen Emperor Moths at two other sights on HC. So after standing on my legs most of the morning, I decided to put the lure out, while I sat on a bench and watched in hope. So with it being so sunny, and me needing to take the weight off my feet, I sat down. I opened the the container, and the little freezer bag the lure came in, and started to consider where the lure would give me the best results…In Gorse? In Broom? or on top of the Heather again. I had only had it in my hand about 30 seconds, and I spotted a Male Emperor Moth flying in my direction. It circled me twice, and then landed directly on the lure. Got to admit I was Gobsmacked. Photo below shows my first ever Emperor Moth photo. Usually they are never still long enough for a photo, hence the buying of the lure…


Now although a Wow photo, and the proof that these lures actually work, its not a great photo, when you have my grubby fingers in the picture. So I decided to get slowly up and place it on the ground. This worked a treat, because the moth flew off, but it landed only a small distance away from the lure. It did this a few times, mainly to get nearer the lure, but I also think it did with a slight breeze. Luckily Hannah and Cobs got to share the sight of this beautiful Emperor Moth. Below are a few of the many I took. With the bottom photo the best I think. I would also just like to thank Jon Clifton and ALS for the Lure, and also the help Jon gave me. Best part the Lure may last 3 years…

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Just worried now…How on Earth do I top a week like this one? I guess I move onto photographing a White-letter Hairstreak and a Bog Bush Cricket.


2 thoughts on “9.4.15.

  1. Linda says:

    Speaking about a magical day….
    Great Blog, brilliant photos! What a pleasure to read this every time! Thanks for sharing all your stories and photos Andy! 👍


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