Thursday, July 02, 2009

Moths at last

Photo 1 -- moth with forewings covering the hindwings

Photo 2 -- forewings open to reveal the black "eyes" on the yellow hindwing

Below, an exciting letter I received yesterday from Regina Alvarez, the Woodlands Manager of Central Park

Hi Marie -
I wanted to share a couple of photos I took of a moth back in late May. I identified it as Small-eyed sphinx, Paonias myops. I then gave a photo of it to Nick Wagerik to confirm my ID. He confirmed and was very excited because he says he has never seen one here in the park! How lucky I was to see it! It was on a lamppost in front of the Heckscher playground. I wonder if it had recently pupated because it was just sitting there and it looked so fresh. The little I have read about it says the caterpillars feed on wild cherry - Prunus serotina and Prunus virginiana, as well as Shadbush -Amelanchier, all of which we have in the park.

PS Nick Wagerik is our Central Park moth guru, and a principal character in my book Central Park in the Dark

PPS the publication date of the new paperback edition of the book [Picador] was yesterday! Should now be available in bookstores.