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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!

04 March, 2016

Silver Y: marking time





Butterflies fly by day and moths by night ...? No, not true. I am sure no butterflies fly by night but there are a number of moths that fly by day including this one, the silver Y (Autographa gamma), which is quite happy to fly by day or by night.
All the silver Y moths we see here are immigrants from the warmer climate of Southern Europe. In some years they can be abundant everywhere and I remember giving up after counting to a hundred one morning in my moth trap and I still had many more to go! 
 
Not often found at rest, usually there is a fluttering of wings, but when they do settle the silver Y marking on the wings is quite distinctive. There are golden Y moths too, but not usually seen during the day unless disturbed.
 
The silver Y does lay eggs on every kind of low vegetation and the larva do hatch and become adults later in the summer boosting numbers but they cannot survive our winters.

Silver Y: marking time