Wednesday 24 July 2019


We went to Norfolk to stay with old friends. There were loads of insects and quite a few interesting birds. Life pan-list grew hugely. Beer was consumed.

We went to Latitude for a day which was good fun, particularly liked the disco diner, disco caravan and disco shed. Let's Eat, Grandma were excellent. Sons of Kemet were a sonic assault (in a good way). Sadly missed most of Celeste's set, she was excellent. Glimpsed Norfolk Hawker whilst there. Ate some very good takeaway - Indonesian vegan curry highly recommended.

On the way home we flew up the coast from Norwich, over the Wash, over Flamborough and Filey, over our old house pretty much (wrong side of the plane).

First, photos from a Norwich garden.

 7-spot Ladybird

 Araneus diadematus

 Megachile sp, a male, any identification ideas, gratefully received.

 Bombus pascuorum


 Arion subfuscus


 Holly Blue

 Common Darter, thanks Graeme for spotting the (not so) deliberate mistake, now corrected. Sympetrum striolatum

 Harlequin Ladybird

 Lucilia sericata

 Oniscus ascellus

Philoscia muscorum

Porcelio scaber (red form)

Pretty sure this is a Tree Slug Lehmannia marginata, need to check again as I'm not 100%.

Also saw Comma, a few hovers and other bits and pieces.

Earlham Cemetery just down the road is a brilliant place, in there I found:

 Cuckoo bee, Bombus vestalis I think (now a confirmed ID).

 Rhagonycha fulva

Bombus lucorum agg / terrestris

Hedychrum niemelai / nobile - can't get to species except with a specimen, they were only split in 2015 and prior to that niemelai was misidentified as nobile in the UK. It's a female and you need to see the third sternite well so I understand. A brilliant beast, neither species common, a parasite of Cerceris ruficornis, C. arenaria, C. rybyensis and C. quinquefasciata, it likes Golden Rod, lots of that in the cemetery.
 Eriothix rufomaculata, common enough.

As above, topside

Male Oedemera nobilis

As above, female.

 Propylea quattuordecimpunctata

 Small Skipper

 Small Skipper

 Sphaerophoria probably scripta, a male.

 Volucella pellucens

More to come.... from Minsmere, Kelling Heath, Latitude and Titchwell.

Agapanthia villosoviridescens - a magnificent beastie, on Hemp-agrimony at Minsmere.

Ok time for a good bird, there were two Caspian Gulls at Minsmere. One of which was a show off and the other went and hid behind an island almost as soon as I found it. Photos digiscoped in low light, with my travel scope, so not bril'.

We saw Stone-curlew really well, lots of Marsh Harriers, Avocets and Black-tailed Godwits and a couple of Spotted Redshank. Louise saw a Bittern.

Small China-mark - flash and no flash.

The Small China-mark was squeezed out off top insect spot by the magnificent Agapanthia villosoviridescens, time for another picture of this beast and here's the NBN link with a bit of information about its biology and distribution (remembering the NBN is a bit out of date, most likely)

Draft Ghost Ship was was very much enjoyed in nearby Southwold, with a fish and chip supper, Adnams beers are inextricably linked with Minsmere from many years past.

Wednesday 10 July 2019

Troubling moths

Having trouble with these two:

Is this Confused (rather than Dusky Brocade)? Following research "No" forewing has a gently curved edge. Underwing feature may be helpful.

There looks to be a raised tuft of scales and the pale lines on the fore wing the mid one and the sub-terminal one look a better shape for that species. (None of these features are any good I believe.)

 Small Dotted Buff (worn)?

Small Dotted Buff, rather worn maybe.

Help and assistance appreciated - email me at badseawatcher at gmail if the comments don't work or FB, many thanks.

These should be Common Marbled Carpet by flight period - before DMC and they look right but I always find these tricky.

 Pelophila borealis a real rare beetle and Orkney speciality. Today - Loch of Harray.

 My Emperor Moth cat pupated two days ago.

 Here's the cat just before pupation.

At the other end of the scale Grass Rivulet from Brodgar today.

 Not many Orkney records of this Amblyteles armatorius (confirmed by Jaswinder Botarai). Also found at Brodgar on Hogweed.