Monthly Squares

Cactus or Sea Urchins?

Or something else entirely?

This is my day 18 contribution to Becky’s July Squares on the theme of Perspective.

These are actually hair clumps on a Ruby Tiger Moth caterpillar.


July Squares: Cactus or Sea Urchins?


Macro Monday

An Unusual Caterpillar

This is my first post for Macro Monday which will probably become a weekly feature. After two years of Monochrome Monday posts I thought it was time for a change.

This is also my contribution to the Friendly Friday Challenge: Unusual.

This is a rare colour variation of the Grey Dagger Moth caterpillar photographed in Hatherton, Cheshire, England in the early 1990s.

The very pale bluish stripe down the centre of the back of the caterpillar is normally a bright yellow. When I found and photographed this specimen I had to do some research. I could find no reference to this colour variation in any of my books so I went to see an entomologist friend to see what we could find in his reference books. In the end we found a reference to the colour variation in a 19th century reference book.


Friendly Friday Challenge: Unusual



Weekly Prompts

Weekly Prompts: What is it?

This is my contribution to the Weekly Prompts Weekend Challenge: What is it?

Having been digitising my slide archives this winter I had a few photos suitable for the challenge.

In the 1980s BBC Wildlife magazine used to hold a monthly photo competition. Each month they would publish a photo of a mystery nature subject and the first person drawn from the entries to correctly identify the species would win a years subscription to the magazine.


Weekly Prompts: What is it?

What is it? No one correctly identified this photo so the magazine didn’t have to give away a subscription that month. The answer is below.


Weekly Prompts: What is it?

What is it? This is the inspiration for Velcro, or hook and loop fastener as it is more correctly known according to the company that makes Velcro. These are the burrs, or hooks, on a Lesser Burdock seed head. The burrs/hooks are what cause the seed heads to attach themselves to clothing and animal hair.


Weekly Prompts: What is it?

The first photo is a close-up of the clumps of hair on the body of a Ruby Tiger Moth caterpillar. Possibly the caterpillar in this photo although the captions on the slide mounts don’t include a date so I can’t be sure.


Photo Challenges

Friendly Friday: Twins

This is my contribution to the Friendly Friday Photo Challenge: Twins.

I started thinking about some of the pairs and doubles I have photographed over the years. After a while I started writing them down as the list was getting quite long and I didn’t want to overlook any when making my selection for the challenge.

Two Maple leaves.

A pair of Maple leaves.

Two Great Crested Grebes.

A pair of Great Crested Grebes.

Two Oxeye Daisies.

A pair of Oxeye Daisies.

Two Sandhill Cranes.

Sandhill Cranes at sunrise.

Two Fly Agaric fungi.

Amanita muscaria.

Two Large White Butterfly caterpillars.

Big and small.

Two pieces of grass sticking out of the snow.


Cosmic Photo Challenge

Guess what this is?

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge prompt is ‘Guess what this is?’

The prompt took me back to the 1980s. In those days BBC Wildlife magazine had a monthly competition for its readers. It was a photo of a mystery species, the first reader to correctly identify the subject won a years subscription to the magazine.

The photo below was used one month, nobody correctly identified the subject.

Anyone interested in what the subject is, scroll down under the photo.

Hairy caterpillar

The photo shows clumps of hair on the caterpillar of a Ruby Tiger Moth.