John zooms in on the strangest of creatures
WEXFORD wildlife photographer John Holden is a man well used to rooting out unusual creatures during his forays into the Raven Forest.
But what he found last week surprised even him - a rare insect, probably a first for Leinster and only the second of its kind ever recorded in Ireland.
The bug is a Hepiopelmus variegatorius.
‘ The first record in Ireland was in 2013, recorded in Donegal by Stuart Dunlop. The second record was yesterday by me,’ said John, who features all his striking images on facebook wwww.facebook.com/WildAboutWexford.
John said the insect is around 15mm in length and has striking colouration.
It is a parasitoid that targets Buff & Ermine Moths, depositing its eggs in their body allowing the young to eat their way out of the host.
John Holden’s picture of rare insect he encountered at the Raven Forest near Curracloe.