Friday 22 December 2017

Very early Mottled Grey

Matthew Cock recorded this Mottled Grey which was attracted to his house lights in Llanon last night. Their normal flight period is March and April but they appear to be emerging earlier each year. There are a good number of county records in February and a few in January. Ina recorded one on 4th January last year which was the earliest county record at the time, but Matthew has seen them in December last year as well as the one this year.

Thursday 21 December 2017

National Moth Night

National Moth Night 2018 dates and theme have been released: 
14 - 16 June 2018.
The theme is "Pyralids" and it will be both a day-and-night event.

The link above will take you to the website for further information.

Anyone with records from this year - 12 - 14 October, you have until the end of the year to submit them if you wish to, details also on the above website.

Ina and Tony

Wednesday 20 December 2017

Pale Brindled Beauty

A mild winter night produced 5 macro species including this Pale Brindled Beauty.  We note that Tony & Ina had their earliest ever record of this moth on the 16th of November and this is a first for us before the New Year.  We also had 26 Winter Moths, a scattering of Mottled and Scarce Umbers and two December Moths.

Carolyn & Evan

Monday 4 December 2017

Comparison of moth catches

As promised in the previous post, I have been comparing the catch from one of last nights traps with that from the same trap in the same place on 6/12/16. I realise that this is completely unscientific and no conclusions can be drawn. The fewer species and smaller numbers could be due to weather conditions, although last night was quite mild and still. Note in diary to trap same place same time next year.

Species                            2016       2017
---------                             -----        -----
December Moth                 28          16
Winter Moth                       16            3
Mottled Umber                   37            2
Scarce Umber                     17            9
November Moth Agg.          2            0
Feathered Thorn                   6            0
Chestnut                                1           0
Northern Winter Moth          1           0
Zelleria hepariella                 1           0
Caloptilia stigmatella            1           0
Acleris ferrugana/notana       1           0

More December Moths

A few from last night in woodland.  This does not compare favourably to a similar time and the same location last year.  Tony will do the analysis later but in the mean time a few photos.
Tony and Ina

Mottled Umber

Winter Moth - (no Northern this time)

Scarce Umber

Mottled Umber

10 of 38 December Moths.

Saturday 25 November 2017

December Moths

We had 42 moths of six species in our oak woodland trap last night despite hail showers and a minimum temperature of 0.9°C.  These included one female and four male December Moths.  There was a size difference of 7 mm and the respective antennae are clearly visible in this photo.  The other moths comprised Winter Moth, Chestnut, Red-green Carpet, Grey Shoulder-knot & 32 Mottled Umber.

Carolyn & Evan

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Cross Inn 21Nov

Put the trap out on a warm misty night and got no adult moths.

I did however get this...any ideas for ident? I did think that the slightly smudgy markings might prove distinctive.

Saturday 18 November 2017

Mottled Umber and Dark Chestnut

Encouraged by Tony's haul on Thursday I put the trap out last night, under an umbrella. Only four moths, these two and a couple of Chestnuts. It was the first outing this month

Thursday 16 November 2017

The winter moths are here

With the promise of a mild night we were tempted to run 3 traps at Ynys-hir last night. We recorded over 160 moths with 14 macros and 1 micro, Rusty-dot Pearl (2). Most numerous were November Moth agg., Feathered Thorn, Mottled Umber, December Moth (22 of them). Also in the mix were Chestnut, Grey Pine Carpet, Red-green Carpet, Yellow-line Quaker, Red-line Quaker, Satellite, Green-brindled Crescent, Winter Moth, Northern Winter Moth, and Pale Brindled Beauty.
The Pale Brindled Beauty is the earliest ever county record by almost 2 weeks, another indication of climate change?
Tony & Ina
Pale Brindled Beauty

December Moth

Northern Winter Moth

Friday 3 November 2017

Feathered Thorn

Last night wasn't very promising with lows of 7/8°C but I had a reasonable show with some favourites attending such as this beautiful creature.  Unfortunately all 3 pristine Red Green Carpets were camera shy; not so the Chestnuts, lying moribund waiting for their moment, but I seem to have plenty of previous pics of those.  Hiding among them however was a Satellite, always a treat, to me anyway.

Thursday 2 November 2017

Cross Inn

The rather grey weather and lack of moths prompted me to post this picture of a Lackey, looking a bit glum....

Thursday 26 October 2017


In the 14 species of moths caught on the bog last night was this Vestal.
Tony & Ina

Wednesday 18 October 2017

Talybont garden

Returns from the garden trap have been rather poor recently so we went all out with an MV light last night. The results were no better with 4 moths: Grey Shoulder-knot, Large Wainscot, Silver Y and Red-green Carpet.  More excitement came from the scuffling and tapping noises from a rain water down pipe not far from the trap. We managed to lift the pipe enough to release a Great tit, which flew off apparently unharmed.
Tony & Ina

Sunday 15 October 2017

Third National Moth Night (of 3)

Not a great deal of Ivy still flowering but traps close by Ivy in woodland produced 27 (minimum) macro species. These included the 6th record of Tawny Pinion in the county - 3 of these were last year. Most numerous - 94 Chestnut, 56 Red-green Carpet & 56 Yellow-line Quaker.
Six micro species including the second Diurnea lipsiella, the first was in the RIS trap at Tregaron.
Also at least 10 Hornets, not as placid as they usually are.  Ina & Tony
Amblyptilia punctidactyla

Diurnea lipsiella

Grey Shoulder-knot

Tawny Pinion

Sunday 8 October 2017

Streak at Llanon

The Streak, Chesias legatella, is a nationally common species which is quite uncommon in Ceredigion. Since 2000 there have been only 14 county records, and only 61 records in total. This may be due to lack of its foodplant, Broom, which is described as being "rather sparsely distributed" in the "Flora of Cardiganshire". This latest record comes from Matthew Cock at Llanon, where he had 2 records last year and 1 in 2012.

Wednesday 4 October 2017

Eglwys Fach

Twenty species on RSPB land last night, including Flounced Chestnut, Chestnut, Brindled Green, Merveille du Jour and Hypatima rhomboidella. Most numerous macro was Red-green Carpet and most numerous micro Epinotia ramella.

Brindled Green

Hypatima rhomboidella

Merveille du Jour

Red-line and Yellow-line Quakers getting cosy!

Sunday 1 October 2017

Cosmopolitan Aberystwyth

There was little actually in the garden trap last night, but the fence next to it was popular, attracting Cosmopolitan and Pearly Underwing:

A supporting cast of Rush Veneer and Silver Ys suggested a good night for migrants, and two Blair's Shoulder Knots were my first of the year.

Wednesday 27 September 2017

Ynyslas dunes

Two Heath traps on the dunes last night caught 14 species of macro moth and 1 micro. Most numerous were Square-spot Rustic. Others included Black Rustic, Angle Shades, Green Carpet, Snout, Silver Y, Pink-barred Sallow, Red-line Quaker (first for year), Anomalous (first for year), Feathered Ranunculus (first for me in Ceredigion).
Tony & Ina
Feathered Ranunculus


Red-line Quaker

Black Rustic

Sunday 24 September 2017

Silver Y on Ivy

As a prelude to National Moth Night next month we found this Silver Y feeding on Ivy flowers whilst looking for some leaf mines for Ina today.

Carolyn & Evan

Saturday 23 September 2017

Flounced Chestnut

Two traps in our nearby mixed woodland last night produced 17 macro species including this Flounced Chestnut, Black Rustic and the first sign of autumn - two Mottled Umber.

Carolyn & Evan

Flounced Chestnut
Mottled Umber

Wednesday 20 September 2017

Bulrush Wainscot at Ynys-hir

At last a decent night for moth trapping. Three actinic traps in the woodland at the RSPB reserve, gave us 17 macro species and 6 micros. Of the 110 moths Snout was the most numerous, followed by Common Marbled Carpet, Red-green Carpet, Brimstone and Pink-barred Sallow. Both Copper Underwing and Svensson's were identified but some slipped through the fingers. Others included: Purple Bar, September Thorn, Gold Spot, Spruce Carpet, Double-striped Pug, V-pug, Pinion-streaked Snout. Best of all was a Bulrush Wainscot, only the 6th record for the site, last one was in 2011.
Tony & Ina
Bulrush Wainscot

Gold Spot



Pink-barred Sallow

Friday 15 September 2017

Broom Moth Larva

I spent much of yesterday with Butterfly Conservation help, checking for Marsh Fritillary larval webs on Rhos Llawrcwrt NNR. Paul Gadsby found and photographed this Broom Moth Larva.  I don't recall seeing one before though the moth turns up in my trap at home from time to time.

Wednesday 13 September 2017

Frosted Orange

We had 4 Frosted Orange when trapping near Plwmp on Monday night. It is not uncommon in Ceredigion, with 340 records, but it was omitted from my document on the macro moths of Ceredigion.
Frosted Orange

Records for 50 years to 2015

Distribution map

Knot Grass

On a biological recording day at a site near Plwmp, we found a caterpillar which was later identified as a Knot Grass. A trap set close to where it was found managed to catch an adult Knot Grass. There are only a few county records for second generation adults, and this is the latest ever seen.
Tony & Ina