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current posts

Mon 22nd May 2017 21:27 by Chris Iles
Newly emerged...
A couple of Lychnis moths emerged today - I collected the caterpillars in seed-pods of bladder campion back in last July.  Almost time to let them fly off!

Lychnis 77 Lychnis 73

Mon 22nd May 2017 19:51 by David Agassiz
Ridiculously early!
This afternoon I went for a stroll above Sandford Quarry, it was very warm but a bit windy, moths pretty disappointing, however I took one Crambus perlella, which is supposed to be out in July and August.
Mon 22nd May 2017 19:15 by Paul Newman
Well done Jane !!  Looking at the size of the body, and ?possibly white? antennae, I wonder of it's a Poplar Hawk.  Just a wild guess, but certainly the wings didn't inflate, whatever it was - pity.  That makes accurate ID very difficult, if not impossible, doesn't it ?
Mon 22nd May 2017 18:29 by Jane Durham
so it works if you don't press any of the symbols mentioned in the instructions page...just the picture itself. The picture below is of ?a moth.  But perhaps it is, as Nigel thought, a damaged specimen.  All agreed?
Mon 22nd May 2017 18:27 by Jane Durham
one more try!
Mon 22nd May 2017 14:34 by Steve Chapple
Pen Elm, Taunton
I may be unable to run a trap currently but I can sit out in the garden and today I saw my first Humming-bird Hawk-moth for 2017 - a new garden record. Also Syndemis musculana FFY.
Mon 22nd May 2017 12:02 by Ian Mathieson
Norton sub Hamdon
55 macros of 29 species last night. Purple Bar, Small Phoenix, Maiden's Blush and Ingrailed Clay took me to 100 macro species this year. This is the second earliest I have reached 100 species in the last 15 years. The earliest was in 2007 when I got there on 10th May. That year ended up being a washout and the worst year for moths that I have known. I hope it is not a sign of things to come.
Although moths were not particularly numerous I did have 54 May Bugs in or around the trap. This is easily the largest number I've ever recorded in one night. Perhaps the cider orchards they've planted around my garden are beginning to have some life in them.
Mon 22nd May 2017 10:28 by Nigel Cottle
Bishop's Hull 21/5/17
FFG: Seraphim & Notocelia rosaecolana
Mon 22nd May 2017 10:00 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 21/5/17
Somewhat better this time - 23 moths of 16 species, including FFY Poplar Hawkmoth, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Common Swift, and Eudonia delunella.  Also a Cockchafer beetle stuck in the rainwater funnel at the bottom of the Actinic trap. A good job I spotted it - that would not have been a nice way for it to go.
Sun 21st May 2017 16:04 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
My first trapping session for almost five weeks (due to weather and holiday) produced 14 moths of 9 species. FFY were Red Twin-spot Carpet (2), Silver-ground Carpet, Green Carpet (2), Mottled Pug (2), Pebble Prominent and Silver Y.
Sun 21st May 2017 16:00 by Nigel Cottle
Dolebury Warren 21/5/17
I led today's BC Somerset & Bristol Branch field meeting to Dolebury Warren where we found: Burnet Companion, Yellow Shell, Speckled Yellow, Green Carpet, Common Wave, Brown Silver-line, Silver Y, Nematopogon swammerdamella, Anania fuscalis and a Small Eggar larval web.
Sun 21st May 2017 09:12 by Jane Durham

Sat 20th May 2017 15:20 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 5.5 degrees

Six moths of six species including FFY - a Lychnis.

Sat 20th May 2017 12:58 by Jenny Vickers
Hi Jane

Where do you live?  If you're not too far away from me (Frome area), maybe I could pop over and go through it with you.  If you'd like to do that, e-mail Paul Newman and he'll give you my e-mail address to make contact.

Sat 20th May 2017 10:58 by Jane Durham
Thank you Nigel.  It was still the same 8 hours it damaged and in fact is an ordinarily wing-sized moth do you think?  All the near wingless ones appear to be smaller than that specimen.
Sat 20th May 2017 09:45 by Jane Durham
Nigel I do all that meticulously but to no avail. Would you mind looking at the pic I uploaded though and tell me what it is.  I've got people waiting for an answer!  Thank you in anticipation
Sat 20th May 2017 09:36 by Jane Durham

Sat 20th May 2017 09:26 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 19/5/17
Again very disappointing - only one moth in the MV trap, a Muslin, and four in the Actinic, another Muslin, Silver Y, White Ermine, and FFY Gold Spot.  Where are they all ?
Sat 20th May 2017 07:32 by Nigel Cottle
Bishops Hull 19/5/17
Two additions to the garden list, both found by day: Psychoides filicivora and Pseudoswammerdamia combinella

Psychoides filicivora 19.5.17

Psychoides filicivora

Fri 19th May 2017 22:00 by Jenny Vickers
Blatchbridge near Frome 18/05/2017
I had a good trapping from my friend's garden on the outskirts of Frome last night. Two traps produced the following highlights:

Heath actinic 23 moths of 15 species with highlights of Scorched Carpet (1), Silver-ground Carpet (1), Mottled Pug (4), Common Pug (1), Grey Pug (1), Nutmeg (1), Rustic Shoulder-knot (1) and Rush Veneer (2)

Skinner MV 53 moths of 31 species with highlights of Eyed Hawkmoth (1), Peppered Moth (2), Scorched Wing (3), Green Carpet (2), Broken-barred Carpet (1), Red Twin-spot Carpet (1), Pebble Prominent (1), Pale Prominent (1), Pale Tussock (1), Clouded-bordered Brindle (2) of which one was the dark form combusta Small Clouded Brindle (1) a lovely fresh Broad-barred White (1), Orange Footman (1), Chocolate-tip (1), Treble Lines (1) another Rush Veneer (1) and Scoparia ambigualis (1).

So far, I'm not finding many micros in this garden. Maybe that will pick up soon.

Fri 19th May 2017 16:15 by Jane Durham was Sue who helped me with photos last year and Jenny & Paul who have recently been helpful and encouraging.  Thank you.  (although I follow all the steps but still to no avail) Today, leaving May-bugs aside, I had 7 macro sp. and 1 Nematopogon Swammerdamella.  But have enjoyed the Common Heaths up on Winsford Hill.
Fri 19th May 2017 15:06 by Sue Davies
Tree House Butleigh
20 spp last night but small numbers, FFYs Lychnis, Buff Tip, Silver Ground and Common Marbled Carpets, Treble Lines, Heart & Dart, Common Pug, Buff Ermine, commonest- 7 White Ermine. One migrant-a Silver Y, and a couple of micros, LBAM and Lathronympha strigana.
Thu 18th May 2017 18:36 by Jane Durham
And now I'm attempting again to add a photo.  Thank you Susan for your encouragement.  This emerged about 4 hours before the picture was taken.  Is it a female moth of some sort...or
am I completely up the wrong avenue? Again no picture follows.  If anyone has time/inclination to view recently added photos I'd be very grateful for an answer on this one help!
Thu 18th May 2017 16:20 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe , Min temp 5.5 degrees

Only four moths including FFY - a Small Square Spot.

Thu 18th May 2017 15:20 by Nigel Cottle
Shapwick Heath NNR 18/5/17
A couple of Argent & Sable on the wing along the Sweet Track at Shapwick this lunchtime. Also Drinker and Yellow-tail larvae.

Argent and Sable 18.5.17

Thu 18th May 2017 09:57 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 17/5/17
Still very poor numbers, just 9 moths, including FFY Garden Rose Tortrix (Acleris variegana) and Celypha lacunana (both quite early) Two of the moths looked like carpets (magic flying ones ?), but they got away and I expect to round them up for identification later today.

p.m.  The two flying carpets turned out to be a Silver-ground, and a FFY Common Marbled

Tue 16th May 2017 15:47 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 14.2 degrees

23 moths of 15 species including FFY - Clouded Bordered Brindle, P. conwagana, and a Flame, which seems early.

Tue 16th May 2017 10:58 by Simon Phelps
Middlezoy 15/05/17
Thanks for the welcome!

Only 9 species in the trap this morning.

Clouded Silver, Poplar Hawkmoth, Angle Shades, Green Carpet, Silver Y, Common Swift, Flame, Buff Ermine and Broken-barred Carpet.

Mon 15th May 2017 23:02 by Liz Marsden
Nr S. Petherton
I've been seeing a few Adela (Cauchas) rufimitrella last week, both at home and at Mount Fancy, Wessex Waterland and Staple Common - always on or near Ladies Smock or Garlic Mustard. At home there is not much of either in flower this year and they seem to show a passing interest in other small white flowers - the one in the photo was resting on Dames Violet - a plant that Orange Tips apparently occasionally lay eggs on, so maybe it also has an attraction!

0152 Cauchas rufimitrella 2

Mon 15th May 2017 16:58 by Jenny Vickers
Eggs, Larvae, Pupae website
Benjamin This website might be of use:
Mon 15th May 2017 16:26 by Paul Newman
Ben - looking at the photos and descriptions in Jim Porter's book "Caterpillars of the British Isles" the distinction between 5- and 6-spot Burnets seems to be that the 5-spot's pairs of black spots in each segment are noticeably less evenly matched than equal in size. So on that basis, I would suggest that yours could well be 5-spots.  However, I am quite happy to be over-ruled by anyone more expert.  I suppose that the ultimate test would be to rear the larvae through to adulthood (they are soon going to pupate) so if you haven't already kept them for that purpose, it might be worthwhile getting some on another visit.  Good luck !!
Mon 15th May 2017 14:02 by Benjamin Bond
Burnet Larva ID
Does anyone know how to ID burnet caterpillars? I found this one at Shapwick Heath a couple of days ago and would like to know what it is. I am guessing it is a Six-spot.

Burnet Caterpillar 2 Burnet Caterpillar 1

Mon 15th May 2017 08:29 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 14/5/17
Back to low numbers again, in spite of the milder night.  Just 7 moths, all singletons. FFY were Eudonia angustea, Buff Ermine and Marbled Minor agg.  Also the first May Bug of the year (not Theresa).
Sun 14th May 2017 17:12 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.3 degrees

19 moths of 15 species including FFY - Common Carpet (2), Silver Ground Carpet, Treble-lines and a Great Prominent only our second here since our first in 2004.

Sun 14th May 2017 13:56 by Paul Newman
East Lydford
Three larval webs of Bird-cherry Ermine (Yponomeuta evonymella) on (surprise, surprise) a Bird-cherry tree in our small wood.

Also, this morning I spotted two massive Spindle Ermine (Y. cagnagella) webbings beside the B3153 east of Somerton (between Somerton and the railway bridge) - they are a regular feature along this stretch of road every year. There are usually as many as half a dozen patches of webs, so I may have missed some ( I do try to keep an eye on the road !!)

Sat 13th May 2017 14:04 by Nigel Cottle
Bishops Hull 12/5/17
FFY: Bee Moth & Lychnis.

Welcome to the group Simon.

Sat 13th May 2017 10:45 by Steve Chapple
Pen Elm, Taunton
30 moths of 17 species represents a timely improvement for my last trap for a while (back op). Eleven FFY: Sharp-angled Peacock, Common Pug (4), Red Twin-spot Carpet (3), Garden Carpet, Silver-ground Carpet, Broken-barred Carpet, Common Wave, Common Marbled Carpet (2), Cypress Carpet, Pale Tussock, Celypha lacunana (2).
Sat 13th May 2017 09:58 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 12/5/17
An improvement in numbers, but still not brilliant.  22 moths of 14 species (so far - a couple of escapees to round up later) including FFY Silver Y, White Ermine(3), Heart & Dart, Garden Carpet, Pebble Hook-tip, Small Magpie, and Notocelia cynosbatella.
Fri 12th May 2017 18:02 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise , Little Quantock 11/05/2017 Min temp. 10.1
A milder night with a little occasional drizzle and light wind resulted in a bumper catch..  76 moths of 39 species identified with 3 micro's still work in progress and 6 pugs still giving me a headache !  No less than 23 species were FFY so here goes : Diamond-back Moth (1) ; Crambus pascuella (1) ; Poplar Hawk Moth (1) ; Common Carpet (1) ; Common Marbled Carpet (2) ; Green Carpet (2) ; Small White Wave (1) ; Sandy Carpet (1) Foxglove Pug (1) ; White-spotted Pug ; Brown Silverline (1) ; Scalloped Hazel (2) ; Waved Umber (1) ; White-pinion Spotted (1) ; Marbled Brown (1) ; Buff-tip (1) ; Pale Tussock (6) ; Buff Ermine (1) ; White Ermine (1) ; Ruby Tiger (1) ; Alder Moth (1) ; Treble Lines (1) ; Shuttle-shaped Dart (1).
Fri 12th May 2017 16:49 by Jenny Vickers
Rodden Nature Reserve, Frome 10/05/2017
First of all, welcome Simon. I'll look forward to seeing more posts from you.

A couple of hours spent at my local nature reserve produced several cases of Coleophora serratella on both Birch and Hazel. Also on Birch was this Eriocrania unimaculella larva (photo) which appears to be classified as 'rare and very local' on our website. Other adult micros seen were Pyrausta purpuralis and Notocelia cynobatella.

Eriocrania unimaculella jv

Fri 12th May 2017 13:21 by Benjamin Bond
Platyedra subcinerea at Richard Huish College
Yesterday evening (11th) I found a Platyedra subcinerea at Richard Huish College, Taunton. Is it really as rare as it shows on the maps?! Unfortunately I didn't get a photo of it, but I did get a good look at it.
Fri 12th May 2017 09:17 by Steve Pilkington
Pugs and Carpets - Cocklake
Apart from the risk of sharp shower in the early hours last night had great promise. The trap did get a bit wet but the results did not disappoint. 87 moths 30 spp including 2 micros to identify and 5 pugs. Total of 12 pugs(? spp) and 13 carpets (5 species). New for here were Small phoenix, May highflier, brown silver lines and a Lime hawkmoth.
Fri 12th May 2017 09:11 by Simon Phelps
Middlezoy 11/05/17
Hi everyone! This is my first post on here, having finally joined the Group. I have been moth trapping in my small garden in the village of Middlezoy since June 2015 and have so far recorded 276 species. The highlight was the Waved Black, a new macro to Somerset.

Had the first decent catch of the year last night. 15 species in total:

Mocha, Waved Umber, Chocolate-tip, Yellow-barred Brindle, Brimstone, Heart & Dart, Common Swift, Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet, Burnished Brass, Dog's Tooth, Spectacle, Silver Y, Green Carpet, Buff-tip and Common Pug.

Wed 10th May 2017 08:56 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 9/5/17
That's three times my catch Ben !!  Just one lonely Shuttle-shaped Dart last night.  Ho hum.
Wed 10th May 2017 08:29 by Benjamin Bond
Wellington 10/05/2017
Caught only three moths in the trap last night - Shuttle-shaped Dart, Brimstone Moth and Early Thorn.
Tue 9th May 2017 15:15 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 7.5 degrees

Seven moths of six species including FFY - a remarkably early Privet Hawk-moth which we rarely see before the end of May.

Mon 8th May 2017 21:47 by Jenny Vickers
Blatchbridge near Frome 06/05/2017
Paul Wilkins has just confirmed though dissection that I trapped Ocnerostoma friesei in my friend's garden on the outskirts of Frome Saturday evening. My Heath trap happened to be under the lone Scots Pine tree in the vacinity! It's classified as ‘Rare and very local' on the SMG website with just one post 1990 record. Thanks Paul for the confirmation.

Also of note, I've seen several Psychoides filicivora adults around the ferns in my garden the last few days. One to look out for.

Mon 8th May 2017 16:54 by Paul Newman
East Lydford
I have just spotted a single Micropterix aruncella on a buttercup flower in my orchard, a FFY.  No sign yet of M.calthella, which is usually the more common of the two species.
Mon 8th May 2017 15:59 by John Bebbington
Langport area (VC6)
The MV trap has been very poor over the last 2 weeks with only a few of the usual spring species - except for a very early Peppered Moth on 5th May. However I have found larvae of 4 species - three common (Hebrew Character, Dingy Footman and Yellow-tail) and one which I suspect is usually overlooked - Coleophora lineolea.
72.044 Dingy Footman larva
72.044 Dingy Footman larva grazing on algae on my shed, Langport

72.103 Yellow-tail larva
72.103 Yellow-tail larva on Hawthorn, Pitney

37.038 Coleophora lineolea la 3
37.038 Coleophora lineolea leaf mines on Hedge Woundwort

37.038 Coleophora lineolea la 1
37.038 Coleophora lineolea larval case

I have also come across two intersting micros. I hadn't seen 28.019 Esperia sulphurella since leaving Surrey in 2004; thanks to Paul Wilkins for the ID.

Walking the dog on Saturday I noticed swarms of 15.078 Phyllonorycter tristrigella on nettles in the shelter of a Wych Elm hedge.

28.019 Esperia sulphurella
28.019 Esperia sulphurella

15.078 Phyllonorycter tristrigella 1
15.078 Phyllonorycter tristrigella
Mon 8th May 2017 09:25 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 7/5/17
Yet another poor night, only 3 moths between two traps. One FFY - a Silver-ground Carpet
Sun 7th May 2017 16:17 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 7.2 degrees

21 moths of 12 species including FFY - Chinese Character (2), Green Carpet (4), Barred Umber and Spruce Carpet(2).

Sun 7th May 2017 08:14 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 6/5/17
Having seen a few moths in the car headlights coming back from a concert at 10pm, I thought I would try a shorter-than-usual trapping session - result ?  5 moths, all common, no FFY, but better than nowt.
Sat 6th May 2017 17:34 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.2 Degrees

15 moths of eleven species including FFY - Lesser Swallow Prominent, Scalloped Hazel, Iron Prominent and Pale Shouldered Brocade.

Sat 6th May 2017 10:50 by Sue Davies
Tree House Butleigh
A quiet night, just 8 spp, FFYs Scalloped Hazel and Chocolate-tip.
Fri 5th May 2017 15:44 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 7.9 degrees

15 moths of nine species including FFY - a Poplar Hawk and two Peppered Moths.

Fri 5th May 2017 09:08 by Steve Pilkington
A quiet-ish night. 32 moths 16 spp.

Red twin spot carpet was new for this garden. Singles of, and FFY - Pale tussock, Pale pinion, Knot grass, Shuttle shaped dart, Buff and White ermine and Galium carpet (which my predictive text wants to call Valium carpet).

Thu 4th May 2017 21:54 by Jenny Vickers
Frome and Edford Meadows
It was pretty dire trapping last night. More windy than forecast and chilly with it. Just 4 moths from two traps. Hebrew Character (2), Flame Shoulder (1) and White-spotted Pug (1).

I fared better on my butterfly transect today at Edford Meadows moth wise anyway with several Grass Rivulet, Ancylis badiana (2) and a new micro for me Elachista rufocinerea.

Thu 4th May 2017 20:50 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock 03/05/17 min temp 7.1c
44 moths of 19 species identified ( a few worn Pugs beat me ) FFY were : Silver-ground Carpet(1) ; Grey Pine Carpet(1) ; Lesser Swallow Prominent(1) and Broom Moth(1) .  Others included Streamer(1) ; Red Twin-spot Carpet(2) ; Small Phoenix(3) ; Water Carpet(1) ; Yellow-barred Brindle(1) ; Early Thorn(2) ; Muslin Moth(2) ; Pale Pinion(1) ; Pale-shouldered Brocade(1).  A nice find climbing up the house wall on the 1st was a Scarlet Tiger caterpillar. Interesting because I've yet to an adult !
Thu 4th May 2017 15:51 by Peter Tennant
Thu 4th May 2017 15:51 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.5 degrees

21 moths of 12 species including FFY - Brown Silver-lines, Bright-Line Brown-Eye and Agonopterix assimilella.

Wed 3rd May 2017 15:17 by Roger Edmondson
Berrow correction.
Martin has just pointed out that that Sharp-angled is a Peacock, not a Carpet. Sorry about that.
Wed 3rd May 2017 15:02 by Roger Edmondson
Martin Evans and myself trapped for 3 hours last night on the beach. Cloudy, no wind and still 13oC when we packed up although the sky was clearing. 29 species. 81 moths including: Oblique-striped 1, Angle-barred Pug 1, Light Brocade 2, Silver Y 8, Plutellas xylostella 1, Sharp-angled Carpet 1, Small Phoenix 1, Sallow Kitten 1, Pebble Prominent 9, Poplar Grey 2, Chinese Character 2, Pebble Hook-tip 1, Plus worn singles of the spring species Clouded Drab, Common and Powdered Quakers And a Cuckoo calling continuously over the reedbeds even as we left.
Wed 3rd May 2017 12:08 by Sue Davies
Tree House Butleigh
First session for a couple of weeks so all change, 22 moths of 12 spp. lots of FFYs, Brimstone, Flame Shoulder, Green, Scorched, Red Twin-spot, and Broken-barred carpets, Waved Umber, Orange Footman and Silver Y, also a new micro to the garden 0436 16.014 Pseudoswammerdamia combinella. 0436 16.014 Pseudoswammerdamia combinella SD17
Wed 3rd May 2017 11:57 by Paul Newman
East Lydford
Just found a female Light Brown Apple Moth (FFY) in a kitchen cupboard - not sure how long it's been there, but still very lively !
Wed 3rd May 2017 11:44 by Peter Tennant
Wed 3rd May 2017 11:44 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 6.9 degrees

16 moths of 13 species including FFY - White Ermine (5) and a Common Pug. We also had another six Twenty-Plume moths.

Wed 3rd May 2017 09:37 by Nigel Cottle
Thurlbear 2/5/17
A few day-fliers at Thurlbear 2nd May: Common Carpet, Micropterix calthella, Pyrausta purpuralis, Pancalia leuwenhoekella, Adela reaumurella and Grapholita jungiella.

Grapholita jungiella 2.5.17

Grapholita jungiella

Wed 3rd May 2017 09:35 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 2/5/17
I was only able to operate the MV trap last night, as the Actinic was sufferng from a case of flat battery.  However, this made little difference to the catch - still low numbers.  Only 9 moths of 6 species, with FFY Shuttle-shaped Dart and Common Pug.  There was also a big Caddis - ? Sedge?
Tue 2nd May 2017 10:24 by Peter Tennant
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe= Min Temp 7.8 degrees

13 moths of three species including FFY - a Pale Tussock.

Tue 2nd May 2017 09:46 by Paul Newman
East Lydford 1/5/17
Still very little to report - 7 moths last night, with a very fresh Brindled Beauty the only FFY.

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