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Buried Treasure

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This was written in January, and January is not a great time for a bug nut.  If you're bit of a bug nut yourself you'll probably understand that feeling of wishing there were more beetles, bugs, moths and butterflies about.  Spring is a few weeks off yet, but there's still some things you can do to satisfy your inner entomologist.

For starters you can grab yourself a gardening hand trowel and go chrysalis hunting.  Most moths spend the winter in the crysalis, or pupal stage, and you can usually find some by digging down in to the soil at the base of trees and shrubs.

Oaks, Limes, and Poplars are always worth rootling around under.  The caterpillars rarely travel far from their foodplant, and if you dig just a few centimeters (an inch or two in old money) below the surface you can often find some buried treasures like those shown above.

Top 3 tips for this activity are:
1.  Always check the north side of the tree first.  It's usually the best.
2.  Don't dig more than a foot away from the base of the tree.
3.  Keep away from those trees which attract a lot of canine activity.  :(

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