Neither Brenda nor I managed to get out for any specific wildlife watching today, but – over lunch on my Benslow course – I did have a good conversation with James about what moths are potentially flying at this time of year (all those around us were talking music and there were two of the tutors discussing moths – it takes all sorts!).

Last year, when James was here in Norfolk with us for some rehearsals, we went out to a lane nearby where Brenda had discovered an amazing cluster of moth caterpillars. These were of the species small eggar, which is quite rare and localised in the UK, and the “cocoons” in the hedgerow were something none of us had ever seen before. So now James wants to come back to try to see the adult moths – which fly at this time of year. So maybe, in a few weeks, Brenda will be adding small eggar to her 2023 moth list. I hope so, as they are a rather splendid moth.

what a remarkable structure! Brenda took this photo in early June 2022 in one of the hedges on the walk she talks about here.

The caterpillars spin this compact web to live in and they bask on it in warmer weather and feed mainly at night. They then pupate for winter and may stay in that state for up to three years before emerging!

No new species for February 8th:

Birds = 116
Moths = 3
Wildflowers = 15