Some of the trees on the reserve look like they are undergoing a spider infestation. These cobweb like structures are actually where moth eggs are laid and hatch out to become caterpillars.
After some detective work, we have identified these as being the caterpillars of ermine moths. The eggs are laid on bird cherry trees, which is the food plant of the caterpillars.
Once the caterpillars have munched their way through the leaves they will enter a pupation stage before they become ermine moths. As the name suggests these moths are white in colour and decorated with black pepper spots.
Bye for now,
Rhian – Seasonal Ranger