At the moment.... mostly about moths

Sunday, 31 May 2009

Moth trap 28

12 Moths attracted overnight, 2 new species. I also saw 2 additional moths yesterday which I disturbed whilst gardening, namely 1 Light Emerald and 1 Evergestis forticalis.

4 Heart and Dart
2 Vine'sRustic
1 Spruce Carpet
1 Peppered Moth (new !)
2 Common Swift
2 Green Oak Tortrix (new !)


Green Oak Tortrix (Tortrix viridana)

Timothy Tortrix (Aphelia paleana)

Peppered Moth (Bistom betularia) - What a great moth!

Peppered Moth (Bistom betularia)


Moth totals

Total Species 44 (42 in garden)

Total moths 198

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Moth Trap 27

9 moths overnight, and nothing new again


1 Yellow-barred Brindle
1 Garden Carpet
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
3 Heart and Dart
1 Vine's Rustic
1 Rustic Shoulder Knot
1 Puss Moth - that's my 3rd of these, a very impressive moth.


Moth totals

Total Species 42 (40 in garden)

Total moths 184

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Moth trap 26

After a warm still night I had high hopes for the trap.... The total 16 moths was good but I didn't identify any new species (there were 2 new micros which flew off before I could get any pics).


2 Light brown apple moth
1 Garden Carpet
2 Shuttle-shaped Dart
3 Heart and Dart
2 Diamondback
2 Common Swift
2 Vine's Rustic
1 Common Marbled Carpet
1 Clouded Silver


Common Marbled Carpet (Chlorochlysta truncata)

Common Marbled Carpet (Chlorochlysta truncata)


Moth totals

Total Species 42 (40 in garden)

Total moths 175

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Moth trap 25

At least it didn't rain last night, although still a bit windy. 16 moths came to the light (a new record for me):

2 Silver Cloud
1 Common Marbled Carpet (new !) - no photo
1 Willow Beauty (new !)
4 Shuttle-shaped Dart
2 Yellow-barred Brindle
1 Light brown Apple moth
2 Vine's Rustic
2 Setaceous Hebrew Character
1 Pale Mottled Willow


Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria)

Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria)


Pale Mottled Willow

Minor sp?


Moth totals

Total Species 42 (40 in garden)

Total moths 159

Moth Trap 24

Didn't run the trap the night before last because of other committments, but back up and running last night and found the following 7 moths:

1 Garden Carpet
3 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Flame Shoulder
1 Latticed Heath (new !)
1 Silver Y (new !)

Silver Y (Autographa gamma)

Silver Y (Autographa gamma)


Latticed Heath (Chiasmia clathrata clathrata)

Latticed Heath (Chiasmia clathrata clathrata)

Moth totals

Total Species 40 (38 in garden)

Total moths 143



Monday, 25 May 2009

Moth Trap 23

Slimmer pickings today:


4 Heart and Dart
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Vine's Rustic

Also found a Lozotaenia forsterana (new !) yesterday whilst gardening


Lozotaenia forsterana

Lozotaenia forsterana


Moth totals

Total Species 38 (36 in garden)

Total moths 136

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Chillis!

A change from the usual reports of moths etc... Last year I had a serious go a growing various varieties of chillis. I did have some success managing to get several types to fruit although I failed completely to get any of the legendary Dorset Naga - the world's hottest chilli - apparently. One reason for that I think was I started too late, i didn't get the seeds sowed until the beginning of April. So this year they went in on Feb 22nd, on our kitchen window sill. I didn't bother with the Dorset Nagas (apart from anything the seeds are £6 a packet! The varieties I went with included "Cherry Bomb", which was the best of last year's and also "Early Jalapeno" which should crop nice and early.

I don't have a greenhouse, and last year the best fruit came from a beer barrel with fleece netting surrounding the plants so I'm giving that another go with 10 plants in the veg patch itself:


I'm hoping that this will keep the plants nice and warm - you can certainly feel that it's warmer down at the plants level, so it should work so long as we don't get too cold a summer. In the sun today it was very warm!


This is one of the plants just after I'd planted it, bearing mind this was planted about 13 weeks ago it gives you an idea of how slowly they grow at the start. From now on they do start to grown more quickly.


Compared to last year, I'm probably 3 weeks further ahead - should give more time for fruits to develop!!

Moth Trap 22 and other bits

In windier and slightly cooler conditions moth numbers in the trap were down, with 11 found, but still 3 new species.


2 Yellow-barred Brindle
2 Heart and dart
2 Setaceous Hebrew Character (new !)
1 Garden Carpet (new !)
1 Double striped pug
1 Marbled Minor (new !)
1 Clouded Silver
1 White Ermine


In addition i saw a large caddis fly around the light last night, I think a Pharynganea grandis and sorting through other pics from yesterday found the bee - Anthophora plumipes


Setaceous Hebrew Character (Xestia c-nigrum)

Setaceous Hebrew Character (Xestia c-nigrum)

Marbled Minor (Oligia striglis) (Probable )

Marbled Minor (Oligia striglis)

Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctutata)

Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctutata)

Anothophora plumipes

Anthophora plumipes

Pharynganea grandis


Caddisfly - Pharynganea grandis


Moth totals

Total Species 37 (35 in garden)

Total moths 129

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Pyrausta aurata

I came across 3 of these gems whilst in the garden today. They're by no means rare or unusual but I was really pleased to find them, just because of the stunning colouration. Two other members of the genus also occur in the UK and are equally colourful, with only subtle differences in wing pattern.

Pyrausta purpuralis

Also found was this impressive spider:

Tetragnatha montana

Tetragnatha montana

And a fresh looking Bombus pascuorum

IMG_9889


There's heavy rain coming tonight so I might give the old moth trap a miss.












Moth Trap 21

15 moths last night (a record for me) and 9 new species (also a record)

2 Heart and Dart
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Light Emerald (new !)
1 Dwarf Pug (new !)
1 Common Swift (very attractive male)
1 Lime-speck Pug (new !)
1 Clouded Silver (new !)
1 Lead-coloured Pug (new !)
1 White Ermine
1 Diamondback (new !) - no photo
1 Esperia sulphurella
1 macromoth TBD



Some of these IDs are bit tentative (pugs are so tricky to ID!)

Light Emerald (Campaea margaritata)

Light Emerald (Campaea margaritata)


TBD

Moth - Can't ID this one - advice welcome

Dwarf Pug (Eupithecia tantillaria)

Dwarf Pug (Eupithecia tantillaria)?


Lead-coloured Pug

Moth - Can't ID this one - advice welcome


Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata)

Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata)


Lead-coloured Pug (Eupithecia plumbeolata)

Lead-coloured Pug (Eupithecia plumbeolata)??

TBD

Moth - Can't ID this one - advice welcome

Lime-speck Pug (Lupithecia centaureata)

Lime-speck Pug (Lupithecia centaureata)



Moth totals

Total Species 35 (33 in garden)

Total moths 118

Friday, 22 May 2009

Moth Trap 20

After the excitement of yesterday with the Toadflax Brocade it was back to normality this morning. 7 moths found, with 2 new species:


1 Common swift
2 Shuttle-shaped dart
1 Heart and dart
1 Small Quaker
1 Esperia sulphurella
1 White Ermine


White Ermine (Spilosoma lubricipeda)

White Ermine (Spilosoma lubricipeda)

Esperia sulphurella

Micromoth

Moth totals

Total Species 27 (25 in garden)

Total moths 104






Thursday, 21 May 2009

Moth trap 19

8 moths this morning, 2 new species including a RDB3 species (at least I think it is, assuming my ID is correct!!)


2 Heart and dart
1 Flame Shoulder
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Spruce Carpet
1 Non desrcript micro-moth
1 Toadflax Brocade
1 Light Brown Apple Moth

Toadflax Brocade (Calophasia lunula)

Now is this correct? Toadflax brocade is a rare species,confined to shingle beaches in
Kent - which is good because that's where I'm based (Broadstairs). It's also stated to be migratory
so perhaps this one has made it across the channel? Either way,ID confirmation would be great!

Toadflax Brocade (Calophasia lunula)?


TBD - advice welcome

Micro-moth - ID advice welcome

Moth totals

Total Species 25 (23 in garden)

Total moths 96







Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Moth Trap 18

7 moths this morning, including more new species.

1 Shuttle-shaped Dart (a very dark individual)
1 Pale Mottled Willow
1 Heart and Dart
1 Spruce Carpet (new!)
2 Small Quaker (new !)
1 TBD


Spruce Carpet (Thera britannica)

Spruce Carpet (Thera britannica)

Small Quaker (Orthosia cruda) - is this correct - it looked very small 13.5 mm in length

Small Quaker (Orthosia cruda)


Garden Pebble (Evergestis forticalis)


IMG_9617


Moth totals

Total Species 23 (21 in garden)

Total moths 88








Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Moth trap 17

5 moths this morning, but it included 2 new species

1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Brimstone Moth - still no photo of this, it flew of when i tried to move it
2 Light Brown Apple Moth
1 Yellow-barred Brindle


Yellow-barred Brindle (Acasis viretata)

Yellow-barred brindle ((Acasis viretata)


A very worn Light-brown Apple Moth (Epiphyas posvittana)

Light-brown Apple Moth (Epiphyas posvittana)


Moth totals

Total Species 20 (18 in garden)

Total moths 81


Monday, 18 May 2009

Cuckoos

During my lunch time walk today I added a new bird for my year list in the form of Cuckoo. Amazingly we never caught up with this species, at least visually during my trip to East Anglia so it was good to see not 1 but 2 cuckoo earlier today. I first saw a male on the fence, just next to the road, then a second later the female appeared from the reeds in the adjacent ditch. I wonder if she'd found a Reed warbler's nest and just deposited an egg? As I approached a little closer along the pavement, they both took flight, swooping across the reserve in tandem. Nice.

Moth Trap 16


6 moths this morning:

1 Hebrew Character
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Rustic Shoulder Knot
2 Heart and Dart
1 Common Swift (new !)


Common Swift (Hepialus lupulinus)

Common Swift (Hepialus lupulinus)

Moth totals

Total Species 18 (16 in garden)

Total moths 76

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Moth Trap 16


5 moths this morning, although the Early Grey wasn't in the trap.


1 Hebrew Character
1 Early Grey
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Rustic Shoulder Knot
1 Heart and Dart

Rustic Shoulder Knot

Moth - ID advice welcome


Moth totals

Total Species 17 (15 in garden)

Total moths 70

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Moth Trap 15

In wet and windy conditions just 4 moths this morning and nothing new


1 Heart and club
1 Flame Shoulder
2 Shuttle-shaped Dart


Moth totals

Total Species 17 (15 in garden)

Total moths 65

Friday, 15 May 2009

Moth trap 14

Again mild and damp last night, 8 moths came to my light


5 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Flame Shoulder
1 Heart and Dart
1 Rustic Shoulder-knot (new !)

Rustic Shoulder-knot (Apamea sordens). Worked this out from Essexmoths pic posted today - thanks Ben

Moth - ID advice welcome

Moth totals

Total Species 17 (15 in garden)

Total moths 61

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Moth trap 13

In damp overcast mild conditions I found only 4 moths this morning - all were Shuttle-shaped Darts.


Moth totals

Total Species 16 (14 in garden)

Total moths 53

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Norfolk report 2 - Early Purple Orchid (Orchis mascula)

We came across a patch of these orchids in one of the woods we visited. A real beauty and a new species for me. It's certainly not a rare one, being found quite widely through the UK. See this web site for a bit info: http://www.britainsorchids.fieldguide.co.uk/?PP=species_account&SPID=50&SHC=2&PSD=1


Early Purple Orchid (Orchis mascula)

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Norfolk report 2 - Micromoth: Adela reaumurella

I came across this beauty on a gorse bush on the heath near Minsmere. It's a member of the Adelidae, a micromoth family known as the longhorns (for rather obvious reasons). There were several present, perhaps representing a small colony.



Adela reaumurella

Moth totals

Total Species 16 (14 in garden)

Total moths 49

Moth trap 12

In very windy conditions overnight there were meagre pickings in the trap this morning, just 2 moths:

1 Hebrew Character
1 Heart and Dart



Moth totals

Total Species 15

Total moths 49

Monday, 11 May 2009

Norfolk report 1 - Common Cranes

So, I'm back now from my trip to Norfolk and Suffolk over the past weekend. We had a truly great time, visited lots of new reserves and saw loads of great wildlife.

I thought I'd post a few highlights over the next day or 2 starting with... Common Crane.

Common Crane

What a great bird. Not a lifer for me as I once had 2 fly over our house!! We were treated to extended views of this bird, a real joy. A few minutes after this, we saw 2 Bittern drop into the reeds and a hobby alighted on a nearby tree. Also we were treated to fabulous views of a pristine male Marsh Harrier. Quite a good hour's birdwatching.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Moth Trap 11

4 moths this morning

1 Heart and Dart
1 Puss Moth - quite a bit smaller than the previous one
2 Swallow Prominent (new !)


Swallow Prominent (Pheosia tremula)

Swallow Prominant (Pheosia tremula)

This picture doesn't do this moth justice - it is highly attractive. Very pleased with that.

Today marked the second day with no examples of Common Quaker (in contrast to all my previous sessions). Maybe that's it for this species this year.


Moth totals

Total Species 15

Total moths 47








Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Cinnabar (Tyria jacobaeae)

Went out for a lunch time walk today, along my usual route, and managed to add to my moth list in the form of a Cinnabar - A beautiful insect. No photo unfortunately - no camera. Maybe another day.


Moth totals:

Total Species 14

Total moths 43

Moth Trap 10

4 Moths this morning

1 Hebrew Character
1 Turnip Moth (new !)
1 Flame Shoulder (new !)
1 Pale Mottled Willow

Turnip Moth

Heart & Club (Agrotis clavis)


Flame Shoulder (Ochropleura plecta)

Flame Shoulder (Ochropleura plecta)

Maybe a Pale Mottled Willow (Paradrina clavipalpis)??

ID advice welcome

Moth totals:

Total Species 13

Total moths 42





Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Puss Moth (Cerura vinula)

Had a quick check of the moth trap and found this impressive moth lurking on the grass near to the light:


Puss Moth (Cerura vinula)

Puss Moth (Cerura vinula)

This is a big moth, this one was 37mm in length. It's easily my most impressive species to date - a good one to mark my 10th species since I started with the trap. It's not rare, being widely distributed and commonly seen in gardens. As an adult this species doesn't feed, but the larva feed on Willows, Poplars and other species.


Moth totals:

Total Species 10

Total moths 38




Moth Trap 9

5 moths this morning, including 1 new species:

2 Common Quaker
1 Heart and Dart (new !)
2 Shuttle-shaped Dart

Heart and Dart (Agrotis exclamationis)

Heart and Dart (Agrotis exclamationis)





Moth totals:

Total Species 9

Total moths 37