Rusty-back Fern

The Rusty-back fern, Ceterach officinarum, has rusty scales on the backs of its leaves. These cover the spore-producing sori and probably help prevent the fern from drying out. During dry spells the fronds roll in at the edges. Growing to just few inches, this fern is found in dry crevices in limestone and in old mortared […]

Yellow-tail Moth

When disturbed the Yellow-tail Moth, Euproctis similis,  sticks the end of its abdomen up between its wings. Both male and female have the yellow tip although it is larger in the female. Some female moths spread pheromones by raising their tails and the males use their feathery antennae to home in on them. So why does this […]

Broad-Bordered Underwing

THERE WERE at least half a dozen Large Yellow Underwings in the moth trap this morning plus some of their smaller relatives but this is the first time that I’ve seen the Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing, Notcua  fimbriata. This is a male; the female is paler. It’s more typical of wooded areas than gardens but as the […]