Thursday, May 30, 2013

Steinkellner's flat-body

Yesterday I found a small moth resting on the trunk of the larger birch tree in the Metre itself.  It turned out to be the Oecophorid Semioscopis steinkellneriana, Steinkellner's flat-body.

20130529 (4) Metre Semioscopis steinkellneriana

This species has larvae that feed on blackthorn and rowan (neither of which grow in the Square Metre), so its choice of a birch trunk seems purely fortuitous.  It is not very well camouflaged either.

On the sallow next to the birch I spotted a small, black sawfly caterpillar feeding alone.

20130529 (7) Metre sawfly

It does not look like the widespread Nematus pavidus as this seems much paler and feeds gregariously on sallow.  I will just have to see if it survives long enough to get a picture of the full grown larva.  It seems quite aggressive, raising its rear half angrily when disturbed and it feeds quite openly, often a mark of distastefulness.