Monday, 12 October 2009

Visited by a Lady and some Admirals!

Last week I finished reading "The Behaviour of Moths" by Poppy Adams. It was described by the Guardian as "A gothic tale of madness, sibling rivalry and lepidoptera, Adams is a skilful entertaining storyteller". Lepidoptery being the study of moths and butterflies. Now I'm no fan of moths - we have a love hate relationship. They loving living with me and I hate having them. They have long outstayed their welcome in Ticking Towers.

I had hoped for some insight into why they should always choose the better quality and more expensive jumpers rather than the blanket I picked up for a pound at the charity shop. I was appalled to see they had munched through my favourite, bought only last winter Joules cardigan but had left alone the chunky Aran ("don't think you're wearing that with me, mother")jumper. Sadly I was disppointed. I learnt a lot about the life cycle of moths and what is within a cocoon (don't ask - its disgusting)but nothing as to their food preferences. Any hope of tempting them out of the cosy confines of my wardrobe with something else they might enjoy feasting on was dashed. Having said that it was a good read although not quite the page turner I had expected.

I thought nothing more about the winged creatures until I was hanging the washing out on Saturday and ducking dark shadows overhead which all seemed to be aiming for my overgrown ivy. I actually can't stand things fluttering around my head but these little beauties stopped me in my tracks for a good half hour. There were lots of them so I rushed for my camera and took some shots.

Apparently there was an influx of Painted Ladies earlier this year and "Autumnwatch" had been urging people to contact them if they knew where they had all gone to. I did spot one Painted Lady (she was took quick for me to get a picture) but the rest after a quick google check were Red Admirals whom I'm sure should all be cocooned up nicely for winter.

Anyway they could be seen for most of the day having a final flutter around the garden and basking on the ivy in the lovely autumn sunshine and sunning their fabulously vibrant wings.

I'm not the best at taking pictures but I have to say I like this final one with the detail in the antennae.

Hope you aren't having too much troubled with winged creatures...

Have a good week.

Love Wend


  1. Oh how lovely! I don't know why you think you are not the best at taking pictures I think they are all stunning! I wonder why some winged creatures (Red Admirals) are acceptable whilst others ( daddy long legs for instance) are not? Anyway loved your post.

  2. We were the same here too re butterflies at the weekend. We also had an influx of ladybirds. Have got up to a frost this morning though (Tuesday).

  3. Hee hee - loved the aside regarding your chunky Aran!!!! I apparently had a Sunday-morning-bad-hair-day jumper which was a cross between powder and Air Force blue - and wasn't allowed to buy anything remotely that colour for many, many years!!

    Thanks for popping by.
    Sue x

  4. Those photos are fantastic!

    I don't know why people get excited about Painted Ladies myself, but I love Red Admirals and Peacocks. On our first summer here in France, I saw what turned out to be a White Admiral. Ben said, 'Oh, really, what colour was it?' The answer, strangely, was 'Black'.

  5. I'm not sure how I feel about butterflies, but I know I don't like those fat,furry moth's bodies...eeargh! Their wings are amazing though, and that last picture is brilliant. When I was little I adored a couple of antique pictures my mother had which were made out of almost glowing blue butterfly wings and opals...don't worry, I'm not suggesting you get collaging!
    Lovely post

  6. The butterflies are lovely but the moths worry me. I thought I had a problem with then but luckily I didn't. I remember the smell of moth balls in my Mothers wardrobe, drawers, everywhere! Conkers work too, so I have been told?!
    Carol x

  7. Lovely pic's, nice to se the sun-shiney photos, lets make the most of this fine weather!

    X Vicky x

  8. Such a precious moment to stand and watch the butterflies for half an hour. I did the exact same thing back in the summer. I noticed some pink and white valerian smothered in the same butterflies and, even though I'm not keen on fluttery thing either, I felt compelled to stop and watch and photograph for half an hour just the same as you did!

    Thank you for sharing xx

  9. Hello!
    I don't think I have popped over to your blog before - but I am going to have a good look now - LOVE the post especially about the bags...

    sam xx

    PS Very lovely blog too!! :0)

  10. love your aran jumper description and title... and your photos are really lovely .

  11. *shudder* - just reading about moths is awful! The butterflies are beautiful, though :-) It sounds like that book is worth a read- I haven't read many gothic tales of madness.

    Thank you very much for visiting The Pigeon Loft. I'm in Nottingham to do an MA in Illustration this year and am really enjoying it so far. It's strange being in such a busy city, but people are so friendly and the novelty of being 5 minutes from all of my favourite shops still hasn't worn off! I bet John Lewis's sales have rocketed since I arrived! Mr. Pigeon is very happy too, as we're on the top floor of a building with views onto the real pigeons, who like to have afternoon naps on the balcony outside the window.

  12. I liked that book & handed it on to mum who has handed it to a neighbour ...and so it goes on.

    I love butterflies & am fine with moths. If you read my post about my retreat you'll see I had near asphixiation by moth balls !

  13. Oh these red admirals are gorgeous - there are so many of them in your photos! How strange at this time of year. It must be othe oddly mild weather we've been having.

    Blimey, the clothes made by the lady mentioned in your last post are BEAUTIFUL. I'm off to investigate for my soon to be four year old - thanks for the tip!

  14. Hi, thanks for visiting with me...
    The thing with butterfly's is that you know you're meant to love them (unlike bats, which are loathsome)but the idea of them fluttering around my head immediately starts me twitching and swiping at my ears. Moths are even worse as you can't even see them coming in the dark!
    Have a great week, x