I had no intention of posting tonight , but I wanted to thank Mel Lloyd and Josh for identifying last night's mystery black beetle as Galeruca tanaceti , a leaf beetle . Much obliged to you both .
I have since read that it has become a pest in Crete , feeding on Oregano .
Some bad news from the Ridge . Before leaving for the Detling showground , I was doing a job with a ladder in the yard , and as we haven't heard or seen anything of the Nuthatches since April/May , I opened up the nest box on the side of the Warden's house and found ,a clutch of six eggs that had been abandoned at some time between then and now . The nesting material used was the same as last year , the flaky chips from the bark of Scots Pine . That time the chips were deposited on top of a dead Blue Tit , and then the nest abandoned . Several joins of the box had been filled with mud , as can be seen top right in the photo , and this one shows that mud filler once it was removed , hardened now , still showing the marks from when it was rammed in with the bill . Six very cold eggs , very similar to a Blue Tit in colouration , but larger ,
as can be seen with the 35mm. film canister for comparison .
I'm going to try another moth that was on the outside light the other morning . I have looked through the Emeralds , and although I would like it to be one of the rarer ones , I think it is the Small Emerald .
Also one for the man . A micro , but very well marked with white on a bronze/gold background .