Saturday 23 April 2011

Some Natural History Records from Crystal Maw

Aphodius sphacelatus

Belted beauty moth 8/4/11 Ardnave dunes NR734296
Silpha atrata 9/4/11 Gruinart grassy area behind RSPB office NR676276
Oiceoptoma thoracica 17/4/11 Heathery slope above Aonan nan Uan NR763426
Adder 17/4/11 In dry grass near Bagh an Da Dhorius NR787409
Aphodius sphacelatus 11/4/11 100s in sheep dung in fields NR6940
Geotrupes stercorarius 5/4/11 Glenastle valley, amongst heather NR455286

Thanks Crystal


  1. It's fantastic to have someone on the island who knows their beetles! It's 30 years since anyone studied beetles here so there's masses to learn.

    Some English names for those who need them - like me!
    Silpha atrata is the Black Snail Beetle
    Oeceoptoma thoracica is the Carrion Beetle
    Aphodius sphacelatus is one of several species of dung beetle
    Geotrupes stercorarius is the Dor Beetle

  2. Hi it's Crystal, I'm afraid I got terribly confused with my grid references that day! Here are the correct locations:

    Belted beauty moth NR294736
    Black snail beetle NR276676
    Red breasted carrion beetle NR423766
    Adder NR407789
    Aphodius dung beetle NR3968
    Common dor beetle NR286455
    Really sorry about that! Won't happen again.


    p.s. on a mission to find a different dor beetle for you all, has a bit of a greenish sheen compared to the beautiful purple of the common one, (from the few I've found anyway) so will let you know when I do (also has a different hair pattern and number of leg ridges).

    Also, look out for those amazing oil beetles while you're out and about! Follow the link to find out more