Saturday, 27 December 2014

Winter Moths

We set our garden trap last night for the last session of the Winter Moth Scheme for 2014 and felt the odds were stacked heavily against us - continuous rain, cold night, possible snow.  Last Friday, for example, we only caught 1 Winter Moth, while last night we were proved wrong - 51 Winter Moths.

Carolyn & Evan

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Mottled umbers

We put out one trap last night, by the centre at RSPB Ynys-hir, hoping for our first Scarce umber of the Autumn. No luck though just 9 Mottled umber and 1 December moth, but we did get to see the Flamingo later.

Tony & Ina

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Garden moth trap 6th December

Only one moth actually in the trap this morning - a male Feathered Thorn.  However, there was a Winter Moth (FFG), a November Moth agg. and a December Moth on the house wall.  Plus one micro, a LBAM.
December Moth

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Rusty Dot Pearl

Lovely Rusty Dot Pearl on my window in Penparcau yesterday, enjoying the sunshine!

Oleander hawkmoth

This is the first known record of Oleander hawkmoth in VC46. It was found between Cardigan and Llechryd in a polytunnel on the 21st October, by Clive Wychwood. His photo shows that the moth was a bit worn but it could have travelled some distance to get to Ceredigion. Many thanks to Clive for sending in the record and the photograph.


Latest Mothy Mutterings

Good Morning All.

The latest Newsletter from BC Mothscount can be found by clicking on the link above.  Opens as a PDF.

Some reports on recent exhibitions, meeting, action plans etc., and a piece about the Belted Beauty, which being an ex Lancastrian I found interesting.


Saturday, 29 November 2014

Ynys-hir woodland

A couple of actinic traps in mixed woodland last night gave us 31 moths of 8 species. The majority (20) were December moths, 3 Mottled umber, Winter moth, Northern winter moth, Yellow-line quaker, Red-green carpet, Chestnut, and November moth agg. (female).

Mottled umber

Mottled umbers

Northern winter moth
Tony & Ina

Monday, 24 November 2014

Garden moth trap 22nd Nov

Rusty-dot Pearl x 1; Light Brown Apple Moth x 1; Acleris sparsana x 1; Red-green Carpet x 2; Feathered Thorn x 2; Merveille du Jour x 1; Nov Moth Agg.; and a Common Marbled Carpet (no photo unfortunately as I spooked it when I went to pot it).  Is my A. sparsana too tatty to positively ID - it did look very similar to the one I had at this time last year (see blog posting).
Also, to show how mild it has been, a male Speckled Bush Cricket on my shed this morning.
Acleris sparsana?
Speckled Bush Cricket (male)

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Clouded-bordered Brindle

With only light rain and low winds last night, I decided to run the 125W MV bulb for a change.  No moths actually in the trap but hunting round the garden I found 11 moths of 6 species: Light Brown Apple Moth x 5; Rusty Dot Pearl x 1; Nov. Moth agg. x 1; Mottled Umber x 1; Merveille du Jour x 2; and this Clouded-bordered Brindle (!).

Clouded-bordered Brindle

Monday, 17 November 2014

Garden moth trap 16th Nov

Unfortunately the weather forecast was right and high winds and heavy rain started at 3 this morning.  I thought I was in for a nil return but I was surprised to find 2 female Feathered Thorns, an Angle Shades, a female Light Brown Apple Moth and my first November Moth agg. of the year.

November Moth agg.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Feathered Thorn & Chestnut

That's all folks!!
At least I won the bet, Tony said there would not be a moth in the trap this morning.

Friday, 14 November 2014

Drinker caterpillar and some butterflies

I found this Drinker caterpillar on the coastal path today.  In the sunshine there were also 2 butterflies flying (a Peacock and a Small Tortoiseshell).  So mild!

Drinker caterpillar

Monday, 10 November 2014

November moths

33 November moths (aggs) to be precise.
Two traps at Ynis-hir last night, the actinic capturing more moths of more species than the mv light.  They were in slightly different habitats, but I still have a theory that actinic is better at this time of year.
Mottled Umber, Feathered Thorn, Red-green Carpet, Chestnut, Green-brindled Crescent, December, one each of Grey Shoulder-knot and Satellite and a couple of micro species, Rusty-dot Pearls and Ypsolopha ustella.
December & Satellite

Grey Shoulder-knot
Not the best photos, sorry.  Out Feathered Thorns were the usual colour Sarah.


Sunday, 9 November 2014

Garden moth trap 8th November

Just 7 moths: Feathered Thorn x 4; Light Brown Apple Moth x 2 and Rusty-dot Pearl x1.  I liked the colouration of this moth, a bit darker than ones I've had before...

Feathered Thorn

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Stigmella aurella

The mines of this little moth should be almost everywhere.  Mostly on Bramble, but also on Geum (Avens), Fragaria (Wild Strawberry) and Agrimonia (Agrimony).

You can see by the red (2km) squares where they have been recorded.

I think it’s a little like sparrows in the birding world... they get overlooked.
You can see a photo of the mine on the British Leafmines web site.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Garden moth trap 4th November

Not particularly cold (11C down to 8C), wet or windy conditions last night but only 2 moths showed up - a Light Brown Apple Moth and an Angle Shades.  I haven't had such low moth numbers since February.

Friday, 31 October 2014

October 30th....warm but windy

A group shot of last night's moths.
The Mervs obviously thought they were too posh to join the others!
Only one missing, a LtB.A. that had a prior engagement...inside a Blue tit I believe.


Thursday, 30 October 2014

Garden moth trap

Just 16 moths last night - LBAM x 5; CMC; Feathered Thorn; Set. Heb. Chr.; Black Rustic x 2; Merveille du Jour; Blair's S-K; Red-line Quaker; Silver Y; Angle Shades; and a Dark Chestnut.

Silver Y (on Lavender)
Dark Chestnut

Another Merv view

Only one photo I'm afraid, but last night's moths included 4 Merveille all with black band Sarah!
19 Epirrita aggs, Spruce Carpet, Grey Pine Carpet, 1 extremely worn but still recognisable Common Marbled Carpet, Red-Green Carpet, Red Sword-grass, Chestnut, Yellow-line Quaker and Green-brindled Crescent.  The warm Southerlies over the next couple of nights may well be more productive.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

December Moth

Last night was better than expected with 12 macro species including plentiful, very variable November Moths, Spruce Carpet and Feathered Thorn.  New for this season were December Moth and Mottled Umber.

Carolyn & Evan

December Moth

Mottled Umber

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Less than 1mph*

Only two moths in three hours yesterday evening, so I gave up. One was a Rusty-dot Pearl, the other this Bedellia somnulentella. Nice to see the moth in the flesh after seeing the mine last month at Cilgerran.


* mph = moths per hour

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Brindled Ochre

From my moth trap last night:

Brindled Ochre
Also 2 more Merveille du Jour (with black band - see earlier post).  27 moths in total.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

.... and Two Micros

 We also caught these two micros.  The first I believe is Acleris sparsana.  The second I think is one of the family Blastobasidae - probably Blastobasis lacticolella.  Under the microscope we could see the strongly upcurved labial palps, the well developed tongue and the base of the antenna (scape) with a scaly tuft (pecten) but the antennae were quite short (well under the stated 2/3 length of the forewing).  Further advice would be appreciated.


Acleris sparsana (FL 10mm)

Blastobasis lacticolella (FL 9mm)

Top View

More Autumn Moths....

A balmy night from three traps -two woodland + one garden -  produced thirteen macro species.  These included Feathered Thorn, Satellite, two variations of November Moth (Epirrita sp), Black Rustic, Flounced Chestnut and Merveille du Jour.

Carolyn & Evan

Feathered Thorn


November Moth 1

November Moth 2

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Merveille du Jour - looking a bit different

I was looking at this moth and realised it was missing something that I have seen in all the other M du Js that I have caught.  Can you see what it is?  The ID books say that this feature is variable, so it's nothing too unusual.

Merveille du Jour

Friday, 17 October 2014

Changes to the blog

You may have noticed that we have changed the layout of the blog.

Details about contacting the group or the county recorders can be obtained by clicking on the "Contact us" button.

Information and guidance on how to create and submit moth records can be obtained by clicking on the "Submitting records" button.

Coed Y Bont moths

Worth Bri lugging the 105amp battery up into the wood or at least that's what I told him! A late Light Emerald and faded Snout join this year's unseasonable list but the rest were as expected Epirritas (every one different looking)  Red and Yellow line Quakers, (red 7 yellow 4, whereas in my garden a stronger light produced 20 yellow, 11 red) Spruce carpets in double figures and then singles of the big and beautiful: Feathered Thorn,M du J, and Grey shoulder knot.
There were hundreds of other creatures from midges to blue bottles.
Recently the expert Lichenologist Ray Woods had a look around and found some rare species so next year Ina we'll have to get to grips with the micros!

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

More Nettle-taps

The brief spell of sunshine yesterday brought out the Nettle-taps again.  I seem to be finding lots of these this year, having only ever had a single one previously.  I also had a Small Tortoiseshell and a Red Admiral on the garden Buddleia.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Big micros, leaf mines, and Mompha langiella

I put a light out for a couple of hours yesterday evening and was pleasantly surprised at the number of moths around in my garden, inc. Green-brindled Crescent, Blair's Shoulder Knot, Pale Mottled Willow, and my largest ever Blastobasis lacticolella at over 12mm long:

Found some leaf mines along Plas Crug in Aberystwyth this morning - i think the first one is Stigmella microtheriella (on Hazel), not sure about the second (on Elm i think):
and I now know not to look for moths in Holly - the leaf mine I found belongs to a fly.
Finally, what I believe is Mompha langiella landed on the window this afternoon; Ina's list suggests that it is rarely recorded in the county:

....and Two Migrants

...and from the same garden in Aberystwyth this Pearly Underwing, which was confirmed by seeing the appearance and darker veins of the underwing, and this Rusty-dot Pearl.

Carolyn & Evan

Pearly Underwing

Rusty-dot Pearl

Mixed Trapping Session

From our valley this morning we had our first Satellite and Chestnuts and from a certain garden in Aberystwyth the catch included Blair's Shoulder-knot, two colour forms of Lunar Underwing, Feathered Ranunculus and Yellow-line Quaker.

Carolyn & Evan

Blair's Shoulder-knot

Lunar Underwing - dark form

Lunar Underwing - chestnut form  

Yellow-line Quaker

Chestnuts....not 'roasting on an open fire'

Two traps at Ynys-hir last night, the Actinic doing slightly better than the MV light for both numbers and species.
The first Chestnuts we have seen this season and first Large Wainscots too. 
Others, in no particular order...  CMCarpet, Red-green C, Spruce C, Grey Pine C, Pine C. Red-line Quaker, Blk Rustic, Green-brindled Cres, Lt Emerald, Marveille du Jour.


Large Wainscot

Green-brindled Crescent
Quality of photos is not too great, sorry!

Ina & Tony

Friday, 10 October 2014

Tachystola acroxantha

From the garden moth trap last night: Light Brown Apple Moth x 1; Common Marbled Carpet x 2; Brimstone x 1; Angle Shades x 1; Red-line Quaker x 1; Feathered Ranunculus x 3; Setaceous Hebrew Character x 3; Black Rustic x 7; Square-spot Rustic x 1; and this Tachystola acroxantha which I found hiding under a leaf.

Tachystola acroxantha