Tuesday, September 11, 2012
It's moth season
It had landed outside underneath the lantern beside my door one evening recently.
It's much bigger than many of the moths that I've seen flying around the house attracted by lights inside during the evening. But not as big as the Cecropia, Polyphemus or Luna moths, none of which I've seen in a long time.
I wondered what kind of moth it was, seemed to see a face on its back and because I recently found those dagger moth caterpillars - (which by the way have gone on to make cocoons in the maple trees all over the bush - goodness knows what the bush will be like next year when the moths climb out and begin the cycle again) - anyway, I've become interested in moths but they are hard to identify.
Then this one spread it's wings after I'd used the flash from the camera.
Underwings are apparently late summer or early fall moths. This is one of them. I've been unable to determine why it is called Once-Married Underwing. It seems these moths have lots of names related to relationships - such as Sweetheart Underwing, Mother Underwing and so on.
The Catocala genus is one of a larger family of owlet moths. There is a book about their caterpillars and they are also included in the Peterson Field Guide to Moths, which has a fairly new edition.
Looks like I'm going to go book shopping for guides to a whole bunch of things soon. I have insect guides but they don't explain the moths and the HUGE variety of bugs and other insects.
Lately I've been noticing the smaller things around me. Big sunsets and sunrises too, but somehow the little insects, the snails, dragonflies, tiny fish among the huge ones in my pond have been capturing my attention. Makes me realize what a fascinating place this world is if we take time to pay attention - don't you think?