Kayleigh Brookes is one of my ALL NATURE team at Coombes. She loves exploring other elements of the wildlife of the site. Kayleigh is lucky enough to live on the reserve. She walks into magic everyday. But at the school of Coombes wizardry she is learning all the lessons to spread special magic amongst the folks that visit too. I can see she has special powers - you can see the glint in her eye when you talk about Coombes - and now again I hear her casting spells ("I need a brew before I go and count Argent and Sable Jarrod - want one?").
Like all my team, they are all there to cast good spells on you. If you want to come along to the reserve when we have set a moth trap (don't worry we don't harm them) then just let us know and you can help identify it's contents - or simply look. And now, over to Kayleigh (she took the photo above too)....................
Nature never sleeps. Late at night when all is quiet, it can seem as though the world has stopped turning to take a nap. But the world has not stopped. And neither has nature.
Here at Coombes Valley we have an interest in more than just the bird life of the woodland. We are interested in every aspect of this amazing site – including that which you may not see during the day.
Most moths are nocturnal, which means they are active at night. So when it is dark and still, do not be fooled into thinking nothing stirs. Moths are the butterflies of the night, and they actually outnumber butterflies almost tenfold.
In the spring and summer we put out a moth trap in the evenings to monitor our moth species. Moths are attracted to light, and this is a handy way of getting them close enough to look at. At this time of year we are seeing a wide variety of species, such as peach blossom, alder kitten, swallow prominent and brindled beauty.
I was particularly excited this morning to find a poplar hawk-moth (see picture). These moths are impressively large – up to 90mm wingspan – and are spectacular looking creatures.
This just goes to show that Coombes Valley has a very diverse range of species, and the night has a thousand eyes.