|The Excavations, taken on my phone.|
For a change I decided to head out early for the half hour drive north to Holy Island. At this time of year with an easterly breeze, and rain yesterday, its as good a place as any. I was hoping for a Red backed Shrike or Rosefinch maybe? Alas, 'the best laid plans' and all that meant that it was not to be. All I could find in the way of avian migrants were singles of Tree Pipit, Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff. There would have been more in our village.
Well, at least the sun was shining, so I turned my face downwards to see if there were any inverts or plants of note. As I left the Excavations, above, this caterpillar was feeding on a dwarf or creeping willow right at my feet. Immediately I knew this was a new one for me and I recall someone posting a similar image on Twitter earlier this week - a Dark Tussock moth. Quite scarce in Northumberland with a disjointed distribution being found either on upland moors feeding on heather or down in the dunes on these low willows. A funky little chap with a badger patterned mohican 'do' it was quite easy to confirm when I got home.
|Dark Tussock moth caterpillar|
|Garden Tiger caterpillar|