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Caterpillar

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tim-f View Drop Down
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    Posted: 28 Jun 2012 at 9:35pm
On Lundy, 16 June 2012.  Maybe 50mm long.  Any ideas?



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iowarth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Jun 2012 at 10:41pm

Looks to me like a Greater Mythical Invisible Moth caterpillar - although I might manage a better guess with a picture! Smile

Chris

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Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme (RETIRED)
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tim-f View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tim-f Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Jun 2012 at 10:57pm
I thought you might be up for a challenge.  Here's a little clue.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GemmaJF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Jun 2012 at 11:24pm
I'm no entomologist but it looks like a Fox Moth Caterpillar, a quick google confirmed they are found on Lundy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tim-f Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Jun 2012 at 11:59pm
Thanks Gemma.  They feed on heather, which was present, so looks likely.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Noodles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jul 2012 at 10:01am
It's actually an Oak Eggar, which is superficially similar to the Fox moth; the latter lacking the white lateral markings. They also share the same heathland habitats, feeding on heathers as well as a variety of more widespread plant species (unlike the Fox).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GemmaJF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jul 2012 at 4:24pm
Nice one Noodles, I wasn't entirely convinced it was a Fox moth caterpillar, nice to know what it actually is. Thumbs Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Noodles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2012 at 8:22am
Just don't pick either up unless you want itchy hands for a couple of days!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Suzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2012 at 3:48pm
Is the oak egger a day flying moth that tends to have large hatches on the wing at once over heathland? I once witnessed the amazing sight of four hobbies hunting them down. There were hundreds of the moths on the wing at once and i guess that attracted the hawks. We just stood still and it was going on all around us and then suddenly the moths had all gone and so had the hobbies. One of those amazing things you see when out and about. So amazing I can't remember the moths' name but I think Oak Eggers!
Suz
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Noodles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2012 at 4:39pm
OE can be seen in the day flying fast (and zig zaggy) above the heather.  There are also several other day flying moorland moth species of similar size but O Eggars would be a good bet (also Emperor or possibly Tiger moth species).  Male Fox moths are more elusive and would tend not to be seen in numbers i would suggest. However, i'd not be surprised if hobbies took them all. Anyhow, it sounds like a great event you witnessed. OE is so named because it's cocoon resembles a detached acorn and typically only the male of all the above species fly during the day.

Plenty of classic aircraft names in there eh Gemma? The Oak Eggar aircraft  would not have had a pleasing ring to it, i suspect. 
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