Larva and eggs of December Moth (Poecilocampa populi)
My biorhythms must be attuned to those of the December Moth or I wouldn't have searched out the egg-box (hen) with the eggs (moth) on its side this morning and wouldn't have seen that one had hatched. That was at 7am this morning. By the time I had had the opportunity to take a second look another six had nibbled their way out of their egg-cases and were wandering around in an adventurous manner. Hawthorn and lime leaves have been placed close to the hatching caterpillars in the hope that they will begin to feed. The books and UK Moths say 'variety of deciduous leaves' and 'especially lime, birch, oak and hawthorn' so these scraps of foliage should be ideal. The hatched caterpillar is just to the left of centre in the image. These particular eggs were laid on 3 November 2014 (see the blogpost for that date) so they have been lying dormant for over five months.