|Small Angle Shades (Euplexia lucipara)|
I have done some identification before with butterflies when I volunteered at a museum back home. That however, was simple due to the carefully curated butterfly species which were meant to capture the eyes of children. One only needed to memorize around 15 different kinds of butterflies, each with its own unique color and pattern. This on the other hand proved to be quite the challenge. There are hundreds of different varieties of moths, some of which look similar to others and makes you wonder what makes them a separate species.
Out of the 10 moths I identified, one of them was particularly striking. It was the Small Angle Shades (Euplexia lucipara). I sat there staring at this moth, looking at the beautiful mixture of browns and black. The highlights are the two bright spots, one on each wing. They look almost like two dots of gold leaf painted on. The name ‘Euplexia’ is derived from the Greek words ‘plexis’ meaning ‘weaving’, and ‘plekō’ meaning to plait or to twist. It describes the resting position of the moth when the wings are folded; ‘lucipara’ derives from the Latin words ‘lux’ meaning light, and ‘luciparens’ meaning light-bearing. Its description mentions a resemblance of a lamp shining out of darkness. This almost poetic derivation is very fitting for this stunning moth.
|Fern in the quarry garden|
|Shoulder-striped Wainscot (Leucania comma)|
|Cock's-foot grass (Dactylis glomerata)|
Post : Walter Chen (UPenn intern)