strange woolly cocoons
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The Bee Moth has larvae which build coccons like this - they are incredibly tough structures, almost impossible to pull apart by hand. They usually take over the nest of a wasp or bee, so perhaps there was something else nesting in this wood first?
Entomologist and biological recorder
there was a bumble bee nest there before !!!!
Thank you so much ! that must be it then .
Any idea when they might hatch , would it be this spring ?
thanks again , this thing has puzzled me for ages - not rare, are they ? i would love that !
Is it the Bee Moth or Wax Moth shown here? The white silken chambers seem to fit the description for Wax and from what I can see of the larva, that also seems to fit.
Robert, you're quite right that the descriptions of the larvae of these two species do seem rather similar, but as far as I'm aware Wax Moth is more usually found in bee hives, i.e. associated with honeybees, while Bee Moth is usually in bumblebee or wasp nests, so I think Bee Moth is more likely here, but I can't completely rule out Wax Moth as an alternative.
If Barbel can keep an eye on these and try and get a photo of any moths that emerge (probably in the next month or two) then we could get a more definitive answer! Bee Moth is a widespread species, so no great rarity value I'm afraid; if it does turn out to be Wax Moth that is a less common species.
... and not mapped on NBNG in the N of Scotland, where this is.
recording wildlife with The Recorder's Year on www.hbrg.org.uk/TRY.html.
When I saw the subsequent mention of a bumblebee nest I did do a mental retraction!
Lat/Lng: 57.6, -4.1
OS grid ref: NH7967