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Dordogne Wildlife Diary

  • Twenty-plume Moth

    I found this on our microwave a couple of days ago! When I first saw it I thought it might be a small pug or carpet moth. But when I looked closer I saw the amazing bird-like plumes. I did a quick bit of research on the web and found it immediately - a Twenty-plume (or "Many-plumed) Moth Alucita hexadactyla. And very beautiful it is too. I was aware of the plume moth group, which often have a curved T-shape form, but not this related species. Apparently it is a common species in gardens, hedgerows and woodlands both over here and in UK. However when it rests it can go un-noticed with its wings closed over its back. The wingspan is just under 2cm and each wing is divided into two sets of six "fingers" or "plumes". The antenae are about half the length of the forewing but they are hidden in the photo. The head with eyes and palps, stick out markedly from the wings. They fly from dusk and come to light. They can be disturbed by day from their larval foodplant honeysuckle and often hibernate in sheds and dense vegetation. Species details from the "Field Guide to the Micro Moths of Great Britain and Ireland" by Phil Sterling, Mark Parsons and Richard Lewington.


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Welcome to my Dordogne Wildlife Diary

In it you will find regular wildlife sightings in the d├ępartement of Dordogne, notably of birds and butterflies in southern Dordogne where I live. In adddition there will be occasional references to neighbouring d├ępartements such as Lot et Garonne, Gironde, the Lot and places further afield. Check out the Faune-Aquitaine website for the latest wildlife sightings in Dordogne and Aquitaine.

Where possible I will add photographs to illustrate the entry. Many thanks to Margaret Mills (family photo) and Denis Cauchoix (birdwatcher photo).

I hope that you enjoy my diary and look forward to your comments.

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