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Nature volume 20, page 431 | Download Citation



IN answer to Mr. Hawkshaw's question whether any one had seen a flight of moths and butterflies in England similar to the one he observed at Trouville on August 12 and 13, I can say that on August 12 I was walking on the Dawlish Warren (a bar of sand stretching across the mouth of the Exe) and noticed a great number of P. gamma moths; they were close to the edge of the water; many of them were dead, and the sand hoppers were eating them, but many more were alive and trying to flutter inland, but seemed too weak to do so. I picked up some and carried them to some wild thyme and they began to feed at once. Some of the moths were in good condition but others very much battered. The wind was blowing freshly from the sea at the time. The moths swarmed in the hedges all the way from our house to the Warren, a distance of four miles, especially on the bramble flowers. There were a great many V. cardui with the moths in the hedges, but none on the beach. A few days afterwards I had a letter from my brother at Dieppe saying there had been a swarin of moths and butterflies there, especially mentioning P. gamma and V. cardui, but there were also skippers and clouded whites. They swarmed about the town and country and were lying dead on the beach. The swarm of moths and butterflies was also on August 12.

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  1. Kenton, near Exeter, August 31



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