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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

15 June, 2010

Spindle Ermine (Yponomeula cagnatella)

As you travel the country roads and lanes of mid-Dorset, the chalk landscapes, you frequently find amazing extensive white 'spiders' webs along the hedgerows. This is the work of the Spindle Ermine moth larvae.

The moth is abundant all across Europe and especially so here in Dorset where the soil is calcareous and where Spindle commonly grows in the hedgerows . The adult moths fly in June and July and the resulting larvae live gregariously on the leaves of Spindle, stripping it completely of foliage. They pupate in large numbers and over winter as pupae in the foot of the tree.