Sunday
Jul262009

Silver-Y Moth

A silver-Y moth, Autographa gamma (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), so named for the inverted Y- or gamma -shaped white mark on the wings (though I would have thought 'lambda' would have been more apt).  I first saw one of these moths in long grass in the middle of a hot sunny afternoon but was unable to get any clear photos of it.  Five days later, on a more cloudy afternoon I was able to get these photos near the same place.

Photos taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading University grounds, Reading, UK, on 2009-07-08.

Saturday
Jul252009

Large White and Small White Butterflies

The above is a large white butterfly, Pieris brassicae (Lepidoptera: Pieridae).  Compare it with this:

I initially thought that this was a small white butterfly Pieris rapae, but in the comments, WilliamB pointed out that it is actually a green-veined white, Pieris napi (also Lepidoptera: Pieridae).  On the underside of the wings of the green-veined white, the dark scales form bands along the lines of the veins, whereas in the small white they are much more evenly distributed.  The flower in the above image is self-heal,  Prunella vulgaris.

This is what the green-veined white looks like from above:

Photos taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading University grounds, Reading, UK, that of the large white on 2009-07-16, those of the green-veined white on 2009-07-25.

Friday
Jul242009

Big-Eyed Dolichopodid Fly

On the bushes beside the path through the woods near the ice house, I came across this slightly unusual looking Dolichopodid fly.  It has large red eyes and a whitish abdomen (which is more noticable from above, through the wings).  It is a member of the genus Argyra (Diptera: Dolichopodidae), possibly Argyra argyria, but I am not sure about that. [Note added 2013-06-20: there are 10 other Argyra species on the UK checklist.]

Photo taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading, UK, on 2009-07-21.

Friday
Jul242009

Ichneumon Wasp

Another ichneumon wasp, this time from a few weeks ago.  I am unable to identify the genus and species, but the order and family are Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae.  It was hunting in long grass at the end of a warm sunny day.

Photos taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading University grounds, Reading, UK, on 2009-07-01.

Thursday
Jul232009

Digger Wasp

A digger wasp, Nysson sp. (Hymenoptera: Crabronidae).  It could be either Nysson trimaculatus, Nysson spinosus or Nysson maculosus.  This specimen seemed rather moribund, and hardly moved, even when I turned the leaf it was sitting on to take photos from a different angle.

Photos taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading University grounds, Reading, UK on 2009-07-19.