Promoting observation, free range exploration, sense of place and citizen science, through the field notes of a naturalist.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Run to the hills its the brown-tail moth

I've yet to have this confirmed but I'm reasonably confident this is a larval web of the brown -tail moth (Euproctis chysorrhoea). This  moth is rare in Wales but widespread in southern and eastern England with only the first county record from the Newport Wetlands last autumn. Theres a lot of hysteria surrounding this caterpillar as it can cause irratation if touched, so it keeps the white overall and mask wearing pest control industry busy with their cans of chemical exterminator.

Midday at Magor Pill and the tide was nowhere to be seen so it was little surprise that waders were thin on the ground. Nonetheless there were some nice wheatear (4 male and 1 female) on the saltmarsh rocks between Magor Pill and Cold Harbour Pill.

At Magor Marsh a Cetti's warbler was kicking off, also numerous chiffchaff and the odd willow warbler blackcap and reed bunting. On the pond was 2 pair of little grebe. coot, moorhen and just when I thought the Magor would miss out on the attention of Canada goose two turn up.

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