71: NOTODONTIDAE

71.025 Buff-tip larvae feeding on the garden rose bush, July 27th 2017. After several were taken to rear through the rest were soon predated, quite possibly by roving parties of Blue and Great Tits.

71.025 Buff-tip larvae, Aug. 11th 2017. Two of those taken to rear through from the batch pictured above.

71.025 Buff-tip larva, one of several found amongst the leaf litter at Hardcastle Crags on Sept. 15th 2016.

71.025 Buff-tip reared from the larva illustrated above, Apr.17th 2017. With a forewing of 29mm this is probably a female. A fantastically well camouflaged moth.

71.025 Buff-tip. A more detailed shot of the pale thorax with the eyes and antennae barely visible underneath.

71.025 A Buff-tip pupa showing the row of spiracles down the flank which enable the pupa to breath. Found by Julian Birkhead at Turner wood, Rishworth on June 18th 2017.

71.005 Sallow Kitten larva found feeding on Crack Willow at Cromwell Bottom, July 19th 2018. All three photos are field observations. Note the shed skin from the previous instar to the right.

71.005 Sallow Kitten larva details as above. The whip-like appendages at the rear are regularly inflated and deflated perhaps as a defensive strategy aimed towards myself, or maybe it's adjusting to it's new instar skin?

71.005 Sallow Kitten larva with extended tails.
 
71.005 Sallow Kitten larva July 27th - details as above. After not feeding for a day or two and just hanging upside down on the lid of the rearing pot every larva's worst nightmare came true.
Parasitic wasp grubs started to emerge from every orifice.
 
I suppose it's habit of feeding openly on the upperside of leaves does make them vulnerable to wasp attacks but some obviously make it through okay.
 
You would think that after emergence the grubs would disperse and shuffle off the edge of the leaf and fall in to the ground litter below to spin up but surprisingly they all kept very close to their host. I've seen this behaviour before with wasp grubs and ladybirds where they immobilise the host's legs and pupate underneath using the host's defensive strategies to protect them for as long as possible. In this case the Kitten larva remained alive for two more days, rearing it's pincers each time I approached. All clever stuff!
71.013 Pebble Prominent to light at the cabin at Cromwell Bottom, July 14th 2018. Need to start photographing these during daylight rather than just grabbing record shots.



71.012 Iron Prominent to MV light at Blake Dean, June 7th 08. 


71.018 Lesser Swallow Prominent to MV light at the cabin at Cromwell Bottom, July 21st 2018. 

71.017 Swallow Prominent to MV light, the Cabin at Cromwell Bottom, July 21st 2018.


2008 Coxcombe Prominent to MV light at Blake Dean, June 7th 08. 
 
71.020 Pale Prominent, one of two to MV light at the cabin, Cromwell Bottom, Aug. 3rd 2018. 

 

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