Archive for September, 2008

Spiders again

Posted in garden, oxfordshire, photography, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , on 30 September 2008 by bramblejungle

September is a good time for spiders, but this year they seem to be everywhere – garden spiders of varying sizes hanging from plants, sheet-web spiders in the grass, hunting and jumping spiders in the porch…. Luckily I like them: as far as I know there are no dangerous spiders in the UK, and they all have individual characteristics. Here are a couple I’d never seen before (with thanks to the experts on Flickr who identified them for me):

Nigma walckenaeri, a little green spider that spins a fine woolly web across a leaf and hides behind it waiting for lunch to turn up:

In hiding

and Nuctenea umbratica (aka crevice spider or walnut orb weaver) – a nocturnal spider that usually spends the day out of sight – I spotted this one under the outside lights at 10:30 pm:

After dark

Earwig

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography with tags on 28 September 2008 by bramblejungle

How could you dislike this cute little creature? She’s foraging for things you wouldn’t want to eat anyway (dead stuff, mostly) (Yes, it’s a “she” – the males have curved pincers).

Earwig (forficula auricularia)

Speckled bush cricket

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , , on 20 September 2008 by bramblejungle

The juveniles I saw in July are now adults – this one (a male) seems to be doing fine despite the apparent absence of a hind leg. He’s on a bindweed leaf: could he be the one responsible for the holes in the leaf? If so, I hope he has plenty of friends to help out!

Speckled bush cricket (leptophyes punctatissima) adult male

Angle Shades moth

Posted in insects, oxfordshire, photography, wildlife with tags , , , , on 19 September 2008 by bramblejungle

Yet another moth that I’d never seen before, though it’s quite common. The camouflage is effective against a background of dead leaves, but on a green vine leaf you could see it miles away!

Angle shades moth (phlogophora meticulosa)

Lilac Beauty moth

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , , , on 14 September 2008 by bramblejungle

When I first saw this moth, I guessed it was unable to fly because its wings were damaged. As it turns out (UK Moths), it crumples the top of its wings at rest to improve camouflage amongst dead leaves.

Lilac beauty (apeira syringaria)

Dark comma

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, Uncategorized, wildlife with tags , , , , , on 13 September 2008 by bramblejungle

According to Wikipedia, this dark version won’t breed till it emerges from hibernation next spring.

Comma (polygonia c-album)

The King of Rome, A true inspiring story about a famous racing Pigeon from Derby.

Posted in flight, garden, oxfordshire, photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , on 8 September 2008 by bramblejungle

Racing pigeon (lost)

The racing pigeon that landed on my roof last year has achieved fame as a stand-in for a bird that made a historic flight from Rome to Derby in 1913. This video explains it all.

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