Hodderscombe Lodge garden
30 moths of 15 species. 4 FFYs Straw Dot, one of the Minors, a Common Carpet and a Clay Triple- Lines. Others Included 6 Scaplloped Hazel, 5 White Ermine (two bigger than i have seen before ), and a Small Elephant Hawk- moth.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 11,9 degrees
The cloudy night was warmer but only produced 26 moths of 13 species including FFY - a Silver Y and a Clouded Silver.
Gave up on the trap, but disturbed this large Longhorn, i think Nematopogon swammerdamella while gardening yesterday.
Langport, VC6, 30 May 2015
A cool and windy night - very few moths, only 20 species - mainly Heart and Dart, Flame Shoulder and Dog's Tooth but singles of Large Yellow Underwing, Small Elephant Hawk-moth and a Bordered Straw.
Mount Fancy moths 27th and 28th may
A belated report - Mike Ridge, Wendy Lunel, Nigel Spring and myself trapped at M.Fancy with Nigel Cottle stationed in Staple Park (see below). Around 160 moths from 36 species which was better than we feared with the cold and windy conditions. Highlights were; Devon Carpet (a 1st at M.Fancy), Barred Umber, Marbled Brown, Clouded-border Brindle, Pale-shouldered Brocade, a late Brindled Beauty, and Epiblema scutulana. Poplar Hawks from Nigel's overnight traps were the most popular with the next days Bioblitzers!
The Bioblitz was attended by some young moth proficient lads who remarkably uncovered another Devon Carpet, some Speckled Yellows - the only previous M. Fancy sighting being back in 2005 (hopefully picture to follow), and in the afternoon found the first of the years Chimney Sweepers.
Wessex Water Land 30.5.15
Out on the Blackdowns today setting up a new 1Km square for the WCBS. Stopped off at Wessex Water Land on the way back and found this example of 485 Schreckensteinia festaliella
. Described as 'Rare and Very Local' on this site. Bramble and Hazel are two of the LHP's so it could be that it is being overlooked and is more common than the few records suggest.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 5.3 degrees
A cloudless clear night with 13 moths of 6 species including FFY - a Shears.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7.8 degrees
22 moths of 16 species including FFY - Garden Pebble, Small Phoenix and , no doubt the first of many, a Large Yellow-Underwing.
Staple Park Wood 27.5.15
Nigel Spring, Liz Marsden and Mike Ridge trapped at Mount Fancy whilst I ran a 125w MV Skinner nearby at Staple Park Wood: I caught 90 moths of 29 species, a pretty good haul considering the blustery conditions and occasional light rain. Presumably because of the wind hardly any moths entered the trap but came down on & around the sheet. Green Carpet (5), Common Marbled Carpet (3), Brown Silver-line (8), Nut-tree Tussock (1), Hebrew Character (3), Pale Tussock (6), Flame Shoulder (1), White-pinion Spotted (1), Common White Wave (3), Marbled Brown (13), Scalloped Hazel (21), Cream Wave (1), Great Prominent (2), Beautiful Golden Y (1), Brimstone (3), Peppered Moth (1), Small White Wave (1), May Highflyer (1), Coxcomb Prominent (2), Devon Carpet (1), Scorched Wing (1), Silver-ground Carpet (1), Orange Footman (2), Silver Y (1), White Ermine (1), Common Wave (2), Small Square-spot (1), Spectacle (2) and Poplar Hawkmoth (1).
Harridge Wood (SWT) 27/05/2015
2 actinics run:
Brown Silver-lines (12), Green Carpet (7), Pale Tussock (4), Spruce Carpet (4), Dwarf Pug (2), Grey Birch (2), May Highflyer (2), Scalloped Hazel (2), Common Marbled Carpet, Devon Carpet, Hebrew Character, Nut-tree Tussock, Poplar Hawk-moth, Small Square-spot, Tawny-barred Angle, White Ermine.
Devon Carpet is a nice surprise and the furthest east the moth has been found in the county to date; Grey Birch is also pretty uncommon in this part of the county, not surprisingly as birch does not feature highly in the landscape around here.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
16 moths of 10 species last night. 2 FFY , Lychnis and Yellow- Barred Brindle.
A better night, 51 moths of 19 sps, but still a dearth of micros. FFYs Orange Footman 8, Common Marbled Carpet 4, Common Swift 4, Green Pug 1, and Rustic Shoulder-knot 1, also a Broken-barred Carpet and a FFG, a Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet. One migrant , a Silver Y.
Taleporia tubulosa and Chris's micro ID's
Hi Chris, I agree with all your identifications, flight season right for Elachista atricomella and no white head. The Dichrorampha sequana is an excellent record.
Male Taleporia tubulosa emerged yesterday from larvae collected in April.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7.4 degrees
34 moths of 16 species including FFY - Chamomile Shark, Shoulder-striped Wainscot and a beautifully fresh Elephant Hawk-moth.
Martin Evans and myself trapped last night with 2 x20 w actinics between the dunes and the reedbed. Lights were on from 9.45-01.15 and the temperature ranged down from 13-9oC. There was a strong half moon under mostly clear skies.
We had 37 species with a couple still not identified.
The best were:
2 Silky Wainscot,
6 Angle-barred Pugs,
1 Brown Rustic,
14 Sharp-angled Peacocks,
2 Small Seraphim,
1 Small Elephant Hawk-moth,
1 Pretty Chalk Carpet,
5 Small Waved Umber,
2 May Highflyer,
Pen Elm, Taunton. Min T 11.5 degrees C.
An strange haul last night (30 moths of 20 species) but to my great surprise I had both Lithophane Pinions. My 'first for garden' Pale Pinion and my second Tawny. Other FFYs were Treble Lines (3), Mottled Pug (2) and Snout.
A few micros for ID
Can anyone please help with the following?
To actinic light at Stoke Camp earlier in the week - Elachista atricomella?
Is this Dichrorampha sequana? Habitat (limestone-ish grassland on a disused railway bank) and flight time are spot-on and I don't see what else it could realistically be, but it would be the first Somerset record since 1979.
From the same location, is this Aethes tesserana?
Holcombe, 26 May 2015
Just found the remarkably beautiful Alabonia geoffrella
fluttering around the hedgerow in the garden, the first time I have come across this moth.
Combe St Nicholas, South Somerset
Last night's trapping session wasn't as good as my previous one because the weather turned clear overnight (contrary to the forecast!). I had 27 moths of 18 species. FFY were Flame Carpet, Silver-ground Carpet, The Rivulet, Clouded Silver, Pebble Prominent and The Lychnis. Heart and Dart (5) now the most numerous but Hebrew Character still clinging on, with one!
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp. 9.2 degrees.
38 moths of 21 species including FFY - Flame (4) and an Alder Moth.
Netherclay LNR 25.5.15
Trapped at Netherclay from 21:00 - 01:00 last night. 182 moths of 37 species. 436 Pseudoswammerdamia combinella
, Orange Footman and Scorched Wing were new for the site.
Some photos of some micros I have come across lately:
Aspilapteryx tringipennella to light at Stoke Camp
Micropterix tunbergella to light at Stoke Camp
Coleophora serratella case on elm near Mells
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe -Min Temp 8.4 degrees
30 moths of 19 species including FFY - Poplar Grey and Rivulet.
Edford Meadows (SWT), 24 May 2015
Not so many moths - perhaps a bit cool and breezy for them. Two actinics run.
Small Square-spot (10), Treble Lines (2), Poplar Hawk-moth (2), White Ermine (2), Common Swift, Scalloped Hazel, Muslin Moth, Clouded-bordered Brindle, Flame Shoulder.
East Lydford 24/5/15
Back down to low numbers again - a bit chilly last night I suppose. Just 13 moths of 6 species, Small Square-spots accounted for 7 of the total. The only FFY was a Treble Lines.
10.15am A FFY Small Magpie found in the greenhouse this morning.
Sue- Waring's book says that Turnip ranges from 16 to 21 mm, so it's possible, but I'm quite happy to be over-ruled either way. Maybe you should do what I often do with obscure ones, and let them fly off and do their own thing !!
Park Wood, Butleigh
I think its small for a Turnip Paul, but I suppose there must be small ones! How about Mottled Rustic?
The rest of the haul of 16 sps included FFYs Orange Footman, Small White Wave, Light Emerald, Setaceous Hebrew Character and Common Wainscot.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
14 moths of 10 species including one FFY a Small Elephant Hawk-moth and 3 Treble Lines.
East Lydford addendum to 22/5/15
I rounded up a further 4 moths from my trap-emptying "moth room" last night, three were just "normal", but one micro I had trouble pinning down. Thanks to John Bebbington, I can now confirm that it was Plutella porrectella, a new record for the site.
Sue - could it be a Turnip Moth ? They have pure white underwings - as you say, it looks a bit worn. Just a guess on my part, so if anyone else has a better ID, I'm not going to sulk.
Park Wood Butleigh
I found this in my trap and haven't a clue what it is, pure white hindwings. Prob something very common and very worn, but I have Moth blindness! Size about 15mm. Help appreciated. Mottled Rustic?
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7.5 degrees.
32 moths of 13 species including FFY - Buff Ermine (2), Brown Silver-line. There were also eleven male Muslin Moths continuing their good year here. In seventeen years we have only once seen a white female flying in the sunshine.
Friday 22nd, Nr. S. Petherton
Compared to the year so far, last night was a deluge; over 60 moths from 37 species (31 macro species). Unexpectedly Broken-barred Carpet was the most numerous with 7. Other highlights were Sandy Carpet (3), Puss Moth (1) , Dogs Tooth (1), Aethes smeathmanniana(1). Also glad to see a Scalloped Hazel and a Small Phoenix which I don't get very often. FFys included Buff Ermine, Silver Ground Carpet and Middle barred Minor and Minor Agg.
I met Robin Clatworthy (Merriot) this morning, who'd also had a good night and like Rob had had an Alder Kitten. As I'd never seen this moth he kindly brought it round for me to get a photo;
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
A good night here, as well, with 49 moths of 30 species. FFG was an Alder Kitten. FFY were Celypha lacunana, Pebble Hook-tip, The Mocha, Garden Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet (3), May Highflyer, Foxglove Pug (2), Buff-tip, Heart & Dart, Treble Lines (2), Vine's Rustic and Silver Y. Nice to have more moths than Cockchafers!
Pen Elm, Taunton, T min 13˚C
No migrants last night but an excellent 49 moths of 33 species. I had my first for garden Lunar Thorn and Treble-bar and a lot of NFYs including: Peppered (2), Mocha (2), Buff-tip, White-spotted Pug, Chinese Character, Common Wave, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Flame, Small Square-spot (2), Poplar Hawk, Brown Silver-line, Grey Pug and a few micros that I am still agonising over.
East Lydford 22/5/15
Much milder plus little wind, equals more moths - simple equation really. Pity O-level maths wasn't so straightforward. Managed to get 33 moths of 19 species as a result, which was good, as I was able to show a selection to a SWT Watch Group this morning - children are always fascinated, especially by the wide range of camouflages that moths employ, such as with Peppered Moth and Waved Umber. They were also able to do some pond dipping, and to handle a couple of Slow-worms just for a new experience. Back to moths, there were several FFY - Clouded Silver, Angle Shades, Peppered Moth, Setaceous Hebrew Character (2), Snout, and Scorched Wing. There was also the first Cockchafer of the year, and a Caddis Fly just for good measure.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 11.4 degrees
The warmer night produced excellent results with 32 moths of 22 species including FFY - Pebble Hook-tip, Scorched Wing, Grey Birch (2) and a Green Carpet. We also had a Wren in the trap which feasted on some of the contents.
Stoke Camp 22 May 2015
Two actinics run on the BC reserve, which really would benefit from some more recording, although getting the gear up there is something of a problem...
A fine night with a fair few species new to me. A couple of micros still to be added.
Rustic Shoulder-knot (22), Treble Lines (12), Small Square-spot (5), Shears (5), Light Brocade (3), Clouded-bordered Brindle (2), Clouded Drab (2), Peppered Moth (2), Poplar Hawk-moth (2), Shoulder-striped Wainscot (2), Waved Umber (2), Angle Shades, Brimstone Moth, Brindled Beauty, Dark Sword-grass, Flame Shoulder, Green Carpet, Lobster Moth, Orange Footman, Purple Bar, Crambus lathoniellus, Micropterix tunbergella, Aspilapteryx tringipennella.
16 sps last night, including pair of White Ermine in cop, Pus Moth, Spectacle-2, Treble lines-5,FFYs, Gold Spot, Small Sq. Spot, Chocolate Tip, Pale Prominent, Bactra lanceolata-2 and FFG a nice fresh Mottled Pug. Def. beats Christmas Sarah!
Emergence of Psychoides verhuella
Collected Hart's Tongue Fern with signs of larval feeding of what I thought would be Psychoides filicivora back in February from Smallcombe Cemetery in Bath and its turned out to be the more 'local and occasional' Psychoides verhuella. I had three emerge today.
A week of Chocolate-tip, Buff-tip, Peppered and Pale Tussock moths. Best of all.. last night a Poplar Hawkmoth. Beats Christmas !
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe = Min temp 6.8 degrees
Best Night for some time with 29 moths of 19 species including FFY - Cinnabar, Treble Lines, Clouded Border, Silver-Ground Carpet and E.scutulana. Also another lovely fresh Puss Moth.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
6moths of 5 species last night. One FFY a Chocolate Tip that i don't think i have seen here for a few years here. I am having difficulty viewing the records. The location just comes up but no details.
Surprisingly poor here last night too, but an odd mix in Butleigh Wood, 1 Mocha, 1 Small Phoenix, 1 Coronet, 3 Scalloped Hazel, 1 Waved Umber and a Pale Tussock.
East Lydford 4 pm
Having a further look at the buttercups this afternoon, I found a small number of Cocksfoot Moths (Glyphipterix simpliciella) also in the orchard, not in the field. These are a first record for this site. They should be quite at home, as we have a fair amount of cocksfoot grass for their larvae to feed on - I suspect they've been here all the time, but I've never spotted them (head in the clouds probably).
Apologies Sue - I couldn't see the photo on my screen. Truly beautiful.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7 degrees
Eighteen Moths of ten species including one FFY - a Peppered Moth.
Congratulations Sue on your exciting catch of a Striped Hawk-moth and the excellent photo..
Having seen the recent postings for Micropterix calthella, I thought I would investigate (again) our 2.5 acres of field which is presently a sea of yellow with meadow buttercups - result of walking a partial transect ? Not one moth. So then I thought I would check out the small group of buttercups in the orchard where I had found a small number last year. Result? Over 30 on about 20 flowers ! I find it astonishing that these moths will apparently ignore the millions of flowers in the field, and concentrate on just a small patch a mere 30 yards away from the field edge. There's nowt so queer as narure !!
Sue - did you take a photo? !!
Striped Hawk Moth
Then to me, please! I haven't bothered with the trap since the weekend. This coming weekend looks better (but how many times have I thought that!).
Last seen heading your way Paul!
Now, now Nigel - jealousy will get you nowhere !!
Considering Sue & I are only about 4 miles apart we get amazingly different catches - all part of life's rich pattern, as they say. I suppose I could hope that there's a remote chance that this beautiful Hawk might consider coming here to brighten my life, you never know. Well done anyway Sue, just give it directions to the south-east please.
Congratulations Sue (said through gritted teeth!!!) - my trap was completely empty this morning.
Butleigh Garden Surprise
I put the wemite trap out, watched the temp drop to 2' and regretted it. Just three Muslins this morning, then this tucked under the bottom egg box.
A Striped Hawk-moth, my first ever in the UK, couldn't believe my eyes.
East Lydford 19/5/15
I was more hopeful of better results last night - wrong !! Just 3 Muslin Moths. Ho hum.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 6.2 degrees and very windy.
Only six moths of five species including FFY - a Small Square-spot.
East Lydford 18/5/15
It was quite chilly & more importantly breezy last night, so I wasn't expcting much. I was right !! Just 3 Hebrew Characters and a FFY Pebble Prominent.
It is new to the square, Nigel. I quite regularly check the Brue around Baltonsborough - probably the most likely place for it - but have not seen it. White-legged Damselflies and Banded Demoiselles, which usually fly with it, are present there.
Worley Hill 17.5.15
Moths seen on today's BC Fieldtrip to Worley Hill: 153 Adela (Cauchas) fibulella
(last recorded here in 2004), Pyrausta aurata
, Straw Dot, Burnet Companion, Mother Shipton, Small Yellow Underwing and Silver Y.
An immature male Scarce Chaser was also seen; I think this is the first record for ST53 but will have to check with Chris Iles to confirm.
Marsh Hill and Burridge Wood, near Dulverton
Unfortunately I don't get much chance to come up to Somerset very often these days, however I have started to walk the Exe Valley Way during the last couple of weeks and have taken the opportunity to photograph a few moths.
There were many Adela reaumurella flying over the hedge on Marsh Hill last week and whilst walking today in Burridge Wood I saw two species of Micropterix. A single M. aureatella seen sitting on a Bilberry leaf and several M. calthella as usual for this species feeding on Buttercup.
Some good variety in the trap recently, but sadly no migrants, Coxcomb Prominent, Iron Prominent, Pebble Prominent, Both Swallow Prominents, Purple Bar, Chocolate Tip and Least Black Arches were all firsts for the year over the weekend.
Despite the lack of migrants in the trap, it was nice to see a Painted Lady at Willet Hill (one of several reported recently) and a Hummingbird Hawk Moth feeding on Red Valerian in Wellington. Hopefully a sign of exciting things to come!
Pen Elm, Taunton, T min 13.2˚C continued
I still have a micro to identify but last night I recorded 52 moths of 28 species (not including the Bryotropha basaltinella caught earlier in the evening).
Hopefully the full list is of interest: Bordered Straw (2, NFY), Common Carpet (1, NFY), Common Marbled Carpet (4), Garden Carpet (2, NFY), Nut-tree Tussock (3), Brimstone Moth (2), Spectacle (2, NFY), Yellow-barred Brindle (2, NFY), Marbled Minor (1, NFY), White-shouldered House Moth (1), Red Twin-spot Carpet (4), Seraphim (1, NFY), Pale Tussock (1), Silver Y (1 NFY), Common Pug (5), Hebrew Character (1), Flame Shoulder (6), Shuttle-shaped Dart (1), Chamomile Shark (1, NFG), White Ermine (1), May Highflyer (2, NFY), Pale Prominent (1), Dog's Tooth (1, NFY), Iron Prominent (1), Brindled Pug (1), Heart and Dart (1, NFY), Celypha lacunana (2). Phew! Exhausted.
For a week or so I have been seeing this tiny but colourful micro (length about 5mm) in the polytunnel but the closest I could get to an ID was Pancalia sp. Paul Wilkins very kindly took on the task and I sent the moth and he identified it as a member of the Gelechiidae family; Chrysoesthia drurella which mines the leaves of the common weeds Goosefoot and Orache. It is apparently generally distributed and appears to be day flying. Paul also took this photo:
A good night here too, 19sps, more FFYs, Scorched Carpet, Treble Lines, Bee Moth and Paul sent one of his White-shouldered House-moths my way. Good to see 2 Bordered Straws reaching central Somerset, you had a great catch Steve.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
With a minimum temperature of 13C last night, the moths were much better - 39 moths of 21 species, the highest species count of the year so far. Best was an FFG Esperia suplhurella. FFY were Common Plume 1, Purple Bar 1, Green Carpet 2, White-spotted Pug 1, Yellow-barred Brindle 1, Scorched Carpet 1, Bright-line Brown-eye 1 and The Spectacle 3. Hebrew Character is still the most numerous, with 7.
Pen Elm, Taunton, T min 13.2˚C
I had an amazing night here at Pen Elm with at least 29 species. The highlights were two
Bordered Straw and a Chamomile Shark (NFG). I had to go out early this morning so the rest are in boxes requiring verifying/photographing but included Yellow-barred Brindle (2), Silver Y, Seraphim and May Highflyer (2). Full report to follow. Busy day, great start..
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 11.1 degrees
Disappointing although it was a warmer night we had only 15 moths of seven species including one FFY a Small Phoenix.
East Lydford 15/5/15
As you suggested Jenny, after the previous night's disappointment, last night proved to be infinitely better, due no doubt to the slightly warmer and less windy conditions. 31 moths in total, of 19 species (best for the year for both statistics). FFY were Small Square-spot (2), Chinese Character, Celypha lacunana, and a first-generation Oak Hook-tip. I have only ever had second generations of these in my traps before now, so it was a bit unexpected. A new species for the site was a Least Black Arches - very nice !!
10 am - just found two moths, still alive, in my rainwater butt - a White-shouldered House-moth (Endrosis sarcitrella) a species which regularly try to drown themselves, sometimes successfully, and what I'm sure is a Skin Moth (Monopis laevigella) which is awaiting confirmation. If I am right, this is another FFG.
Holcombe, 16 May 2015
First moths of the year in the garden (on only the second attempt).
Shuttle-shaped Dart (2), Bright-line Brown-eye, Brimstone Moth, Hebrew Character, Spectacle, Flame Carpet. A nice selection for the time of year.
Bryotropha basaltinella, Pen Elm Taunton
I was just about to pour my Friday night pint when I noticed a small, unrecognisable, moth perched on the lip of the glass. Pint abandoned (temporarily) as I frantically searched for a suitable receptacle – pot found in time, moth secured, photographed and, hopefully, correctly identified as Bryotropha basaltinella. It is described as 'rare and very local in Somerset', so, please let me know if I have got it wrong. A great start to the weekend - now, back to that pint!
Looks like it might be a better night tonight Paul
. I'm putting both traps out in Frome and hoping for the best. Good luck if you try tonight.
Netherclay LNR 15.5.15
A walk around the site this afternoon produced c500 Cocksfoot Moths on the buttercups and my first record of Small Yellow Underwing here.
East Lydford 14/5/15
There are times when I wonder why I bother, and last night was one of them. One Hebrew Character in the actinic trap, and one White Ermine in the MV. I appreciate that there was a chilly wind, but even so......
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe. Min Temp 8.3 degrees
22 species including FFY - Poplar Hawk (2), Setaceous Hebrew Character, Clouded-Bordered Brindle ((dark form), Engrailed, Lychnis, Pebble Prominent, Yellow-Barred Brindle
Brean Down 13th May
Trapped at Brean Down for 2 hours last night recording the following:
- 6 Dark Sword-grass
- Yellow Belle
- Marbled Coronet
- Heart and Dart
- Oak-tree Pug
- Flame Shoulder
- Angle Shades
- Epiphyas postvittana
- Common Pug
- Red Twin-spot Carpet
- Treble Lines
- Waved Umber
- Early Thorn
- White Ermine
- Least Black Arches
- Common Quaker
- Shuttle-shaped Dart
- Brown Rustic
- Rustic Shoulder-knot
- Scathophaga stercoraria
- Sylvicola punctatus
- Empis scutellata
- Pherbellia cinerella
Temp had dropped to 6' by 10pm and apart from a few Brimstones, nothing was moving. Surprised to find anything apart from Cockchafers in the trap this morning, but 22moths of 10 sps braved it. FFYs, 1 Buff Ermine, 3 Pebble Prominent, 2 Scalloped Hazel, 1 Green Carpet, 1 Clouded silver, 1 Brindled Pug and a FFG Dog's Tooth - I so nearly left the trap in the shed!
Sand Point / marsh
Martin Evans and myself trapped last night on the south side undercliff below the point and on the edge of the salt marsh.
We used 2 x actinics. Lights on 9.40-12.40 under a clear a clear sky with temperatures ranging between a chilly 10-8oC.
We recorded 20 species.
Shears 2, Brimstone 12, Common Blue butterflies (asleep on grass stems) 5, Light Brocade 2, Waved Umber 1, Green Carpet 5, Common Pug 3, V-Pug 1, Flame Shoulder 2, Elachista argentella 7, Foxglove Pug 1,Treble-lines 2, Scalloped Hazel 1, Least Black Arches 2, Red Twin-spot Carpet 2, Chinese Character 1, Clouded Silver 1, Broken-barred Carpet 3, Puss Moth 1, Hebrew Character 1.
We also had 1 Long-winged Conehead nymph, 7 Cockchafers (always a pleasure) and Whimbrel and Tawny Owls were calling.
Bishop's Hull 13.5.15
Only 10 moths of 7 species. Common Marbled Carpet, Heart and Dart, Diamond-back Moth and 670 Depressaria daucella
were all FFY.
Bath area 13/5/15
Fox Moth in the quarry on Bathampton Down today.
With the rumours of a large-scale invasion of Painted Ladies about to occur, it was good to see one holding territory and chasing off Peacocks at Twinhoe, just south of Bath.
East Lydford 12/5/15
Not a good night for moths (quite cold) - just 2 Muslin Moths, 1 each Hebrew Character and Flame Shoulder, and a nice fresh Lime Hawk (FFY).
Langford Heathfield 12.5.15
Three Painted Ladies and a Hummingbird Hawkmoth at Langford Heathfield this afternoon. Also a conservative estimate of 300 Micropterix calthella
on the buttercups.
Netherclay LNR 11.5.15
Trapped at Netherclay until 01:00h this morning. 107 moths (41 of which were Green Carpet) of 26 species. Dotted Chestnut and Syndemis musculana
were site firsts.
Another better night, 18 sps, FFYs Heart & Dart, Flame Shoulder, Mocha, Chinese Character, Spectacle, Iron prominent, Swallow Prominent, White Ermine, only the second ever Latticed Heath and a FFG, Broken-barred carpet. Latticed Heath very camera shy, wait all day for it to open its wings for a pic!
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.3 degrees
17 species including FFY - Buff Tip (2), both Iron and Coxcomb Prominent, Red Twin-spot Carpet and a Parsnip Moth.
Also two May-Bugs.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Pugs and Carpets at last! 26 moths of 10 species, including FFY Semioscopis steinkellneriana (1), Red twin-spot Carpet (4), Common Pug (1) and V-Pug (2). Others were LBAM (2), Brimstone Moth (2), Shuttle-shaped Dart (1), Flame Shoulder (1), Hebrew Character (11) (no drop in numbers yet) and Nut-tree Tussock. Also one worn Noctuid that couldn't be identified, a couple of Cockchafers and a black beetle. Unfortunately a large spider had got in and packaged a Hebrew Character!
Nr. S. Petherton
Quite a few NFYs last night - 11 out of the 17 species; Green Carpet(4), Least Black Arches(1), Pale Prominent(3), Common Marbled Carpet(1), Poplar Hawkmoth(2), Lime Hawkmoth(1), Buff tip(1), Iron Prominent(1), Setacious Hebrew Character(1), Bright line Brown Eye(1), Clouded-border Brindle(1). Flame Shoulder numbers (7) have overhauled Hebrew Character(4). Very chuffed with the Lime Hawkmoth, my second ever and a beautiful moth. Others were; Brimstone(2), Nut-tree Tussock(1), Swallow Prominent, LBAM(1), and a possible Cyclamen Tortrix.
Micros flying in Bath today.
At last a bit of warm weather to bring out some day flying micros including this Esperia sulphurella 28.019 (BF649) spotted this afternoon in Lansdown.
Barrington Hill NNR 11.5.15
Several examples of 152 Adela (Cauchas) rufimitrella
on Cuckooflower (one of the Larval Host Plants) at Barrington Hill today.
MISTERTON 10th May 2015
Cockchafer City in my trap this morning - picked out the egg boxes very cautiously!
Waved Umber 1, Hebrew Character 8, Common Quaker 1, Swallow Prominent 1, Brimstone Moth 1, Flame Shoulder 1 and a lovely Scalloped Hazel followed by 9 species of all sorts of shapes and markings that have baffled me. Half the fun of learning...!
Langport, VC 6 and Hardington Moor NNR 10 May 2015
The garden trap has been extremely disappointing - no doubt in part because of the Fern Green development. Although there have been very few micros this attractive specimen of Callisto denticulella
was a pleasant surprise.Callisto denticulella
My wife led an Orchid walk on Hardington Moor NNR yesterday - lots of Green-veined Orchid and a good few Early Purple Orchid. I spent a couple of hours looking for micros but the weather was a problem!
I did find several Micropteryx calthella
on Buttercup flowers, and one Cocksfoot Moth Glyphipteryx simpliciella
and photographed two longhorns - Adela reaumurella
and Nematopogon swammerdamella
and a Tortricid Ancylis badiana
.Adela reaumurellaNematopogon swammerdamellaAncylis badiana
Surprisingly, there are hardly any records of moths for Hardington Moor NNR - a unique site which must have a good range of species.
At last things seem to be improving, tried Wemlite instead of MV, 34 macros of 15 sps and assorted micros to ID. lots of FFYs, amongst them, Puss Moth, Poplar HM, Waved Umber, Red Twin-spot and Grey Pine Carpet and a Light Brocade.
Pen Elm, Taunton, T min 12˚C
A good(ish) night with 39 moths of 23 species. Five NFYs: Puss Moth, Common Pug (2), Silver-ground Carpet, Celypha lacunana, Pebble Prominent (3). The rest as follows: Oak-tree Pug, Lunar Marbled Brown, Brimstone Moth (2), Flame Shoulder (2), Red Twin-spot Carpet, Least Black Arches (2), Pale Prominent, LBAM (3), Nut-tree Tussock (4), Double-striped Pug, Chocolate Tip, Clouded Drab (2, very worn), Hebrew Character (5), Bright-line Brown-eye, Nutmeg, Muslin, Scalloped Hazel, and Streamer.
East Lydford 10/5/15
Numbers down last night, but much more variety - 17 moths of 12 species, including FFY Broken-barred Carpet (second ever record here, the other one in 2011), Yellow-barred Brindle (first since 2010), Heart & Dart (no doubt the first of many to come), Waved Umber, Silver-ground Carpet & Garden Pebble. Also two Twenty-plume Moths, which is the first time I have trapped more than one at a time - they're not common here - with only 7 records before this year, in 10 years.
Cedestis subfasciella from Scots Pine, Bathwick, Bath
This Cedestis subfasciella emerged today from Scots Pine needles collected autumn 2014 from Henrietta Park, Bathwick, Bath.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7.9 degrees.
Twelve species including FFY - Waved Umber, Shuttle-shaped Dart and on the ground by the trap the wing of a Puss Moth.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
A better night for species diversity, with 24 moths of 10 species. FFY were Small White Wave 1, Brimstone Moth 1, Waved Umber 1, White Ermine 1 (earliest record) and Pale Mottled Willow 1. Others were Light Brown Apple Moth 1, Shuttle-shaped Dart 1, Flame Shoulder 2, Hebrew Character 13 and Nut-tree Tussock 2.
This morning I found an FFG Psychoides filicivora on a window!
This Psychoides filicivora emerged today from larva feeding on Hart's Tongue Fern collected this last autumn/winter at Tucking Mill, Nr Bath.
Chris, thank you for the info.
White-letter Hairstreak larva pupating
Norton Fitzwarren 9.5.15
Small Yellow Underwing at a site near Norton Fitzwarren this afternoon.
East Lydford 8/5/15
Boom time !! (well almost) - 28 moths altogether of 14 species, of which 8 were FFY - Flame Shoulder (2), White Ermine, SIlver Y (3), Pale Tussock, Bright-line Brown-eye, Eudonia angustea, Common Carpet, and an early Celypha striana
4.pm - Just found a Lunar Marbled Brown in the room where I open my traps - purely by chance. It must have sneaked out when I turned my back. This is the first record of this species here since 2009.
Frome and Lullington 07/05/2015
First of all, many thanks Paul
on your help with the Pug ID. Chris Iles kindly cautiously confirmed Oak-tree Pug too via e-mail.
I had two traps out last night with the following results:
15W actinic heath trap at Mum's garden in Frome giving 4 moths of 4 species: Hebrew Character (1), Brimstone (1), Nut-tree Tussock (1) and Pale Tussock (1), the last two both firsts for me.
MV Skinner trap at a friend's garden in the village of Lullington just outside of Frome giving 15 moths of 10 species: Hebrew Character (4), Brimstone (2), White Ermine (1), Brindled Beauty (2), Nut-tree Tussock (1), Chocolate-tip (1), Clouded Drab (1), Muslin moth (1), Lesser Swallow Prominent (1) and Mocha (1).
Paul - I collected the E. argyropeza from fallen aspen leaves late last autumn - there is a very small window of time in which to find them, as the larvae spend most of their lives in the leaf stems where they cannot be seen, and they leave the mine before pupating. I put the leaves in an old plastic takeaway box, after putting in some sand for the larvae to burrow into, and left them over winter, opening the box once in a while to allow the air to change.
It is probably too late this year for fallen sallow catkins - I can no longer find any locally. I have never reared anything larger than a Caloptilia before (and even that was by accident...) and am trying to work out what to do as I go along. Perplexed at the moment as to how to know when the larvae are about to go into the soil to pupate.
I had a Phyllonorycter kleemannella emerge earlier this week from a mine on grey alder, A. incana, so have now reared this moth from the hat-trick of alder species that are found locally.
Steve - a blue majority in the trap would be a sight to behold - I can only think of the Clifden Nonpareil.
Combe St Nicholas, South Somerset
First trapping session for a week but uneventful, with 13 moths of 6 species - Shoulder Stripe 1, Streamer 1, Muslin Moth 1, Shuttle-shaped Dart 1, Flame Shoulder 2 and Hebrew Character 7.
Bishop's Hull area 7.5.15
Found several Nettle-tap and a few Cocksfoot Moth around the lanes west of B. Hull yesterday afternoon. Also netted examples of Epermenia chaerophyllella
and what I think is Antispila metallella
Antispila metallella (?)
7th May Nr. S. Petherton
Things looking up here; NFY were Brindled Beauty, Waved Umber, Shuttle-shaped Dart, White Ermine, Sallow Kitten and an exciting new for the garden was a Mocha. Altogether 17 macro species (31 moths) and 4 Light Brown Apple Moths. Also I saw my 1st Cinnabar moth yesterday, but as it was in the polytunnel it may have pupated there and had a more speedy development.
Norton sub Hamdon
A reasonable turn out here with a number of new candidates for the constituency. Angle Shades, Mullein, Buff Tip, Red-green Carpet and Oak Tree Pug were the new arrivals. 44 moths in total of 22 species.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 7.3 degrees and wet !
Twenty moths of ten species including FFY - Scalloped Hazel and Clouded Bordered Brindle.
East Lydford 7/5/15
A low turnout here too Steve, only 14 in total - 8 Hebrew Characters, 2 each Clouded Drabs and Brimstone Moths, and singles of Green Carpet & Mullein (both FFY) The Mullein is the first here since 2010. There was also a Pug of some description, but it flew off before I could ID it - never mind, it was unlikely to have been a rarity !
Pen Elm, Taunton. Min T 9.5 degrees C.
Not a great turnout in my constituency last night but the reds won handsomely in the shape of a 'new kid on the block' a Red Chestnut. 19 others were counted: Brimstone Moth (4), Nut-tree Tussock (2 - including a very pale example), Swallow Prominent (1 NFY), Oak-tree Pug (1 NFY), Shuttle-shaped Dart (2), Hebrew Character (7), LBAM (1), Brindled Beauty (1).
Jenny's Pug and Chris's Sallow Larvae
Hi Jenny, I don't see any reply to your Pug query so I'm going to stick my neck out and say that I think you are right that it is an Oak-tree Pug and not a Brindled Pug. I say this for the following reasons, because of its size of less than 20mm, the shape of the discal spot and the overall forewing shape. But I have to say they are notoriously difficult to separate visually unless they are at the extreme end of their norm.
Hi Chris, your Sallow larvae are very interesting as are your comments on your Ectoedemia argyropeza adult, any chance of a bit of info and advice from you?
My first reared Hawk-moth emerged today, a stunning beautiful male Lime Hawk-moth which I just have to share with you.
Even fewer here, but a FFY V- Pug, resting with wings up!
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.6 degrees, windy and wet.
Only 7 moths of six species including FFY - a Pale Tussock.
Larvae on sallow catkins
Last month I collected fallen sallow catkins from a number of sites in the east Mendips, hoping to rear through some of the various moths that feed on them. Rather to my surprise, the commonest species I have found appears to be the Brick (top photo); the books suggest it is usually a poplar or elm feeder (and I find it regularly on elm). The caterpillars seem to be doing their best to pretend to be tiny adders, which is not a bad strategy I suppose when you are on the ground in leaf litter. Not only is the pattern adder-like, their movements are snake-like too.
Also present are Sallow/Pink-barred Sallow and Slender Pug larvae; one of each in the lower two photos below.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Yesterday 10 moths of 7 species, 3 FFYs Maidens Blush, White Ermine and a Silver Y. Also one FFG, a White Spotted Pug. Today 9 moths of 6 species.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp (on May 4) 9.3 degrees wet and windy.
14 moths of six species including FFY - a V Pug. I had difficulty in identifying this because, unlike most Pugs which lie with flat wings, it sat with vertical wings like an Early Thorn.
Robin Clatworthy's garden species this year for up to April 30th
6 nights (3 of which returned nil);
Spring Usher, Pale Brindled Beauty, Dark Chestnut, Chestnut, Common Plume, Leek Moth.
March. 7 nights
Dotted Border, Oak Beauty, Early Grey, Hebrew Character, Clouded Drab, Double-striped Pug, Chestnut, Common Quaker, Small Quaker, Pale Pinion, Early Thorn, Satellite.
April 18 nights
Double-striped Pug, Oak Beauty, March Moth, Hebrew Character, Common Quaker, Small Quaker, Clouded Drab, Early Grey, Dark Sword-grass, Brindled Beauty, Pale Pinion, Angle Shades, Powdered Quaker, Herald, Muslin Moth, Nut-tree Tussock, Early Thorn, Purple Thorn, Red-green Carpet, Brimstone Moth, Dotted Border, Pale Mottled Willow, Chinese Character, Flame Shoulder, Pale Prominent, Swallow Prominent, Lesser Swallow Prominent, Brindled Pug, Waved Umber, Garden Carpet, Bee Moth.
Buckland Wood 3.5.15
Here's another micro from Sunday's BC Fieldtrip to Buckland Wood. 608 Elachista rufocinerea
; it seems that this is a first for the site - photo courtesy of Dave Ayling.
Pen Elm, Taunton. Min T 9.5 degrees C.
A bit breezy last night but, possibly, the best window for trapping (according to the BBC weather site) for a few days. The catch resulted in 32 moths of 18 species including my first NFG macro (since a Mottled Umber on December 31st), four NFYs and a possible new micro.
The catch consisted of the following: White-pinion Spotted (1, NFG), Foxglove Pug (2 NFY), Least Black Arches (1, NFY), Iron Prominent (1, NFY), Dark Sword-grass (1, NFY), Flame Shoulder (2), Brimstone Moth (4), Nut-tree Tussock (3), Pale Tussock (1), Shuttle-shaped Dart (1), Red Twin-spot Carpet (1), Brindled Pug (1), Hebrew Character (3), Common Quaker (1), Muslin Moth (3), Scalloped Hazel (1), LBAM (3) and a Paraswammerdamia albicapitella, which I am hoping that James McGilll will confirm.
Update: James McGill ruled out Paraswammerdamia albicapitella and suggested that it may be a Swammerdamia caesiella. Any thoughts? Apologies for the poor picture before it escaped into the dangerous recesses of our conservatory.
I had my first Ectoedemia argyropeza emerge from mines collected last autumn - there aren't too many previous Somerset records for this moth. The adult is so small it requires magnification to even be certain that it is a moth...
Frome 01/05/2015 and 03/05/2015
Still small numbers here in Frome both at my garden and my Mum's.
On 1st May in my Mum's garden I had 6 moths of 4 species as follows: Brindled Beauty (1), Shuttle-shaped Dart (1) LBAM (3) and this pug which I believe to be Oak-tree pug (1). I'd appreciate confirmation on that if possible.
On 3rd May in my garden I had 8 moths of 5 species as follows: Muslin moth (1) (a first for me), Brimstone (1), Early Grey (2), Shuttle-shaped Dart (1) and LBAM (3).
Is the events list finalised for this year yet please (I keep checking the events page)? I would love to try and make some of the evenings if I can.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Just 8 moths of 7 species last night but it did include 2 FFYs. A Red Twin- Spot Carpet and my 1st Hawkmoth of the year- a Poplar Hawkmoth. There is also an unidentified larva on the peppledash wall nearby.
East Lydford 3/5/15
Just made it into double figures, in spite of the milder night. Probably the full moon and the quite strong SW breeze didn't help. Four each Hebrew Characters and Clouded Drabs, plus singletons of Brimstone Moth, Shuttle-shaped Dart (FFY) and Common Pug (FFY). Also quite a few flies including a caddis and a cranefly, plus an ichneumon wasp. Quite a varied collection !! Are things improving ? I hope so, but there's a long way to go.
Buckland Wood 3/5/15
BC meeting at Buckland Wood today had a good turnout but unfortunately the weather was unkind. A few moths seen including Burnet Companion, Grapholita jungiella and what looks like Epiblema scutulana (below) which has been recorded at Buckland although it does have confusion species.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 7.5 degrees
Twenty moths of 5 species including - FFY a Purple Thorn.
Still haven't put the trap out this week but this Phyllonorycter platani emerged today from a leaf mine on London Plane collected last autumn. Collecting leaf mines is one of the only ways you are likely to see many of these exquisite moths. It also gives you another dimension to 'mothing' other than trapping and also provides an accurate record of breeding sites.
GMS Manor Road, Taunton.
Very poor catch, just 7 moths of 5 species. 1 Eudonia angustea, 1 Bee Moth, 1 Brimstone, 3 Shuttle Shaped Dart and FFY 1 Dark Sword-grass.
Thursday 30th Apr, Nr. S. petherton
After spotting a Small Dusty Wave and a female Muslin Moth (both FFY) in the afternoon, I was encouraged to put the trap out ; H Character(3), Muslin Moth(3), Early Grey(2), C.Quaker(2), Knot Grass, Nut-tree Tussock, Flame Shoulder and a Dark Sword-grass(FFY). (14 moths of 8 species). It got chilly quite early (6C by about 10pm) so nothing to grumble about, but I was a bit sore to find the bulb had mysteriously developed a crack in it overnight!.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Somewhat better last night, with 20 moths of 8 species. Two FFYs were Scalloped Hazel (my earliest record) and Red Chestnut (only my 4th). Others were Water Carpet 2, Muslin Moth 2, Common Quaker 1, Hebrew Character 11, Clouded Drab 1 and Nut-tree Tussock 1. I'm 6 species down at this point compared to the same time last year.
Norton sub Hamdon
Amongst a very poor catch last night I was surprised to find a Seraphim. This is only the second one I 've recorded here, the first being in 2009. Waring says it flys in May/June. It was definitely May by the time I found it but it could have arrived before midnight and would have been an April record.
Pen Elm, Taunton, T min 7.5˚C
14 moths of 8 species including a Chocolate Tip and Streamer with a Scalloped Hazel being the only FFY.
Bishop's Hull 30.4.15
Four moths of four species. Waved Umber was FFY.
East Lydford 30/4/15
How exciting ! A 50% increase in numbers - 4 Hebrew Chracters, and 1 each Muslin Moth & Brimstone Moth.