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June, 2010:


While down on the potager preparing a new bed for the championship pumpkins we are planning to grow, I discovered some self seeded bulb fennel among the weeds.  Carefully removing the weeds from around these plants, I noticed a highly colourful caterpillar.

After grabbing the camera and taking a close-up I carried on weeding and eventually got the pumpkin plants in place.  We have handed out a number of seeds or plants to neighbours here, for them to raise their own pumpkins.  In the autumn we will host a pumpkin festival with curries, cakes, soup and beer all made from these orange jewels.  There will be a prize and trophy for the largest pumpkin raised so –  Let the games begin!

The following morning I downloaded the photos.  On showing Adrian the photo he remarked that it looked like an Alice In Wonderland caterpillar.

No hookah pipe but still an Alice In Wonderland caterpillar

I looked up the caterpillar in our highly thumbed insect book.  “Larvae on wild carrot, fennel, and other umbellifers”  – Bingo – Common Swallowtail butterfly.

I am not common I am unique !

There is nothing common about this startling little bug and the adult is also quite striking.

Flights of Night Time Fancy

On opening the shutters this morning – this delightful creature was sat between the window and shutters, protected from the night time rains.

Cream spot tiger moth

Cream Spot Tiger Moth

The colour of its wings a perfect match for the granite windowsill.

On closing the shutters tonight, this little creature had joined the Tiger Moth for company.

Muslin Moth

Muslin Moth

Its name – Muslin – meaning “delicately woven cotton fabric” – seems to be the perfect description for this delicate little moth.

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