Slender Burnished Brass, Thysanoplusia orichalcea

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Caterpillars on Supermarket produce immediately raise the possibility that they have been imported from a foreign country. So on receiving images of several caterpillars on supermarket mint from Anneli in West Berkshire I was naturally suspicious but also curious. A … Read More

Identification of the Elephant Hawk-moth and Small Elephant Hawk-moth

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Please see the latest Elephant Hawkmoth species page with complete life cycle photographs and information on this link – the Elephant Hawkmoth The Elephant Hawkmoth and Small Elephant Hawkmoth, two of the most colourful moths to be found in the … Read More

Chamomile Shark caterpillar, Cucullia chamomillae

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The fully grown Chamomile Shark caterpillar is one of the most striking and easily identified caterpillars to be found in the British Isles. The caterpillar shown right was spotted on Sea Mayweed on the cliffs at Porth Joke, near Newquay. … Read More

Caterpillars found on Figwort, Buddleia and Mullein plants

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The caterpillars we’ve received the most identification requests for in recent weeks have been the Mullein Moth caterpillar and the The Vapourer Moth caterpillar, Orgyia antiqua. The Mullein moth caterpillar is particularly easy to identify with its strikingly bold yellow … Read More

Identification of the male and female Dark Green Fritillary Butterfly

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These photographs of well marked male and female Dark Green Fritillary butterflies help show the differences between the sexes The images were taken at the weekend at Porth Joke on the north coast of Cornwall near Newquay. Several of these … Read More

Stag Beetle Lucanus cervus

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Sometimes during caterpillar identification email exchanges things can take an unexpected and very pleasant turn. Having sent an email to Marion Pellon from near Twickenham in response to receiving the image below of a Mullein Moth caterpillar found on Buddleia … Read More

Caterpillar identification update

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Amongst the many commonly seen hairy caterpillar identification requests recently received have been some more exotically marked caterpillars. The most common has been the stunning Vapourer Moth (Orgyia antiqua) caterpillar reported in several different growth stages, known as instars. It’s … Read More

Migrant Hummingbird Hawk-moths arrive in the UK

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In the last few days the first main influx of Hummingbird Hawk-moths of the year have arrived in the British Isles. These migrant moths are always a delight to watch as they hover at flowers like tiny hummingbirds. A delight, … Read More

Orange-tip butterfly chrysalis

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The Orange-tip butterfly, Anthocharis cardamines, caterpillars reared from collected eggs are beginning to pupate. It doesn’t seem to matter how many times I see any caterpillar undergo this extraordinary change it never ceases to amaze me. Having selected a suitable … Read More

Caterpillars in silk web spun on Hawthorn at Penhale Sands, Cornwall

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During a search for Lackey moth webs at Penhale Sands we came across three small webs containing hundreds of tiny caterpillars. Although too early to be certain of the caterpillars identity, being on Hawthorn suggests they are likely to be … Read More

Migrant butterflies on the Lizard, Cornwall

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The largest number of Painted Lady butterflies possibly recorded in the British Isles this year was our reward for a trip to Poldhu Cove on the Lizard at the weekend. Of the total of 13 seen during the day 8 … Read More

Brown hairy caterpillar pupates and emerges as colourful Tiger Moth

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The Cream-spot Tiger Moth, Arctia villica, caterpillar saved from being run over by traffic on the main Lands End to St Ives link road ( See Cream-spot Tiger Rescue) has emerged from its pupa. At the time it had seemed … Read More

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