|Willow Beauty Peribatodes rhomboidaria in crypsis|
Our old garden shed is popular with the Willow Beauties. It's one of my favourite moth species. They're there every morning in recent weeks, two or three or four of them. It fascinates me how in the near-dark they are able to choose a surface that blends with their wings. Crypsis, the behaviour by one animal of avoiding detection by another; truly it's a wonder of the natural world.
The old shed needs to go. The rusty hinges are failing; the warped wooden slats no longer overlap and keep the weather out. The slope above the shed at the top of the garden needs shoring up with a thick wall to protect our neighbour's greenhouses from the effects of time and gravity: downland heading down land. This is a project for another year though, so for now the shed belongs to the moths and the spiders, the woodpigeon who sits on top in the afternoons, the black cat who teases our dogs (and scares the pigeon away), and the privet and ivy, whose roots behind the old shed are holding the slope together for the moment.