Focus On: Wings in the Woods

Caption: © Colin Barr

19 volunteers from Brantwood, National Trust, Cumbria Butterfly Conservation Branch and Rusland Horizons volunteers spent a couple of days looking for and counting the caterpillars of the rare Netted Carpet moth on its foodplant, Touch-me-not Balsam. The caterpillars varied in size from 1 cm long along the midrib of a leaf imitating a seed pod to 3 cm, imitating the leaf stalk! We must have surveyed thousands of plants with back aching, eye stretching diligence but the result was a record of hundreds of caterpillars! This record will contine the 25 years of monitoring of this species conducted by Dr Paul Hatcher of the University of Reading, and illustrate the valuable and sensitive management of the plants by the landowners. Thanks to everyone who helped.

© Rusland Horizons 2017. All rights reserved.
Rusland Horizons is a Landscape Partnership funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund

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