Friday, 29 November 2013

The Sprawler

While waiting for the EDF meter reader to turn up, I photographed this Sprawler moth Asteroscopus sphinx (formerly called Brachionycha sphinx grrr) Noctuelle-Sphinx or Noctuelle de Cassini. He (we think, but he's keeping his antennae well tucked in) has been perching on our front door for several days now, and given the recent sub-zero nights he has need of that fluffy coat. The meter reader looked rather chilled too.

Who's got hairy legs then?

Adult Sprawler moths are found throughout much of northern Europe. They are active from October to December in France. The larvae feed on the leaves of deciduous trees, mainly oaks - spoiled for choice round here! Presumably the eggs are deposited on twigs. The fur coat is excellent camouflage against oak bark, though not so good on a window. Last night no less than four of them were distributed on various windows and Tim found the big eyes rather spooky - he said, "Ever felt you were being watched?".

... and a hairy chest, too!

Further information and pictures may be found in English in UKMoths, and in French in Lepinet, Les Carnets du Lépidoptériste Français. Here you will find photographs by Phillippe Mothiron. No pun intended...

1 comment:

Tim said...

But his collection is without creases!