Wednesday, 19 May 2010
Lilies and Lychnis
A lovely day, a lovely walk. Penny and I marked my extreme age by meandering from Grassington via Linton Falls and the Wharfe bank, through Grass Wood and back again to the village for tea. Many decades ago, my Mum took my brother and sisters and me to Grass Wood to see the wild Lily of the Valley. They were sparse then but have prospered and are abundant this year, one of them providing a boutique hotel for this Daddy Long Legs. The reason is that the excellent Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is gradually restoring the wood after years of misguided management, and has very good notices explaining its thinking and asking us all to be patient, as the full effect will not be seen for 200 years. The way that genetic replacement of our failing body parts is going, I look forward to that. One of my cards said: "You say you're still-middle-aged..." and the inside "How many 120-year-old do you know?" Ha, ha....err, hum.
At home, the trap produced this handsome Lychnis; at least, I'm pretty sure that's what it is, although there are a number of moths which look annoyingly similar. One of them has the nice name of Pod Lover, but I think that's too rare to be this moth. If it is a Lychnis, it is out early for the North, but that would accord with the number of species that seem to have moved our way since my Waring & Townsend & Lewington guide was published in 2003. Other candidates include assorted Rustics, Minors, Brindles and Brocades. So you can see that I'm covering myself, but I'll stick with Lychnis and wait for your more expert views.