Trapped in Weston last night: Dark Sword-grass, Silver Y, Rush Veneer, 2 Winter Moth, Mottled Umber and Red-green Carpet.
Kestrels Rise,Little Quantock 27/12/2015
I think there were more moth-ers than moths active last night.! I have but 2 December Moths to report. Judging by the met. forecast this will be my last effort this year, so I wish you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR and a bountiful 2016.
I put the traps out at my Mum's garden in Frome last night. The first time trapping for weeks. I had a grand total of three moths. The Skinner MV trap had just two Common Plume on the outside. The Heath actinic produced just one moth, an early Dotted Border (my first).
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Just 2 moths today after a 5 nightbreak. One December Moth and one Mottled Umber and lots of flies! Yesterday i saw a butterfly and again today. Todays being a Red Admiral. My 1st sighting of a butterfly in Dec. I believe.
Tree House Butleigh
Odd mix here too. Dec.Moth, first Hebrew Character of the winter, an Acleris laterana and a pristine second generation Bordered Straw here too. Home v Migrant?
East Lydford 27/12/15
As there was no rain forecast, although quite breezy, I thought I'd try a trapping session for the first time in a week. It was marginally more productive than of late, with a total of 4 moths, two in each trap - two Winter Moths, one female December Moth, and a very early Pale Brindled Beauty. This isn't a common moth here, and some years don't produce any at all, so a nice surprise. The previous earliest record was on 31st. January in 2007, and most appear in February, when they do condescend to visit.
Bishop's Hull 27.12.15
T Min 10.2°C. Nothing at all in the trap; a Bordered Straw on the lawn was only the second record here with the first being on 11.6.15.
Seasonal greetings to all. Not much worth posting in the trap, but a search in the old cider orchard bordering our garden yesterday produce these vacated mines, one containing frass. ? Celypha woodiana. The farmer usually harvests the Mistletoe but hasn't this year. The hunt is on for fresh mines!
Help from James McGill "Your mistletoe leaves probably show the feeding damage of a polyphagous tortricoid (Ditula angustoriana or Epiphyas postvittana are the usual species)." - of which there are plenty around the garden.
Season's greetings from East Lydford
A Happy Christmas and New Year to all bloggers, near and far.
At 500 feet with strong wind and heavy showers we have had a miserable time mothing this December to date, In the first fortnight we had December Moths, Spruce and Red-green Carpets and a Chestnut. Since then nothing but Winter Moths at actinic light in a window. The only bright spot is the fact that we have twenty daffodils out.
A happy Christmas to you all.
Robert - your record of S.polychromella looks to be a Somerset first - well done !
Norton sub Hamdon
With all the migrants being reported on the coast I put my trap out last night against my better judgement. My only moth was a Tawny Pinion, my first of the year.
One to MV in Bath on Saturday (19th) night. The only moth in the trap!
East Lydford 20/12/15
Just a solitary Silver Y last night - it makes a change from Decembers & Winters. There seems to be a goodly number of Silver Ys around at the moment, all over the County, and much later in the year than usual. Certainly this one of mine is only the second December record here in 10 years, and later by over 2 weeks than the other one in 2006.
Langport 18-20 December 2015
A silver Y on Friday night, then 2 Rusty Dot Pearl, a Mottled Umber and an Angle Shades last night.
Where are those migrants?
I am on the SW coast of IOW, both traps out last few nights. You have done better in Weston Paul. All we have is wind!
Dark Sword-grass, Silver Y, LBAM and Cypress Carpet in the garden trap this morning. Pity more of the south coast goodies haven't made it this way.
East Lydford 18/12/15
It's getting almost predictable - just 2 Winter Moths last night, one in the MV trap, one on the kitchen window. Considering the mild weather, there ought to be more about - are the bats hovering with intent ?
Pen Elm, Taunton Min T 13.2 decrees C
It was a ridiculous 14.2 degrees here at 11.30pm last night, dropping by only one degree at dawn. Having had only singletons in my last three MV sessions I gave the actinic a try and had a slight improvement of three moths of three species: December Moth, Chestnut and my latest ever Silver Y.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
First trap for a few nights and 2 December Moth and 35 Mottled Umber. Hoping the oak leaves won't be too defoliated next year. Lots of moths on the wing as we drove along country lanes to a Stable crib service early yesterday pm.
East Lydford 16/12/15
As they say in France, plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose, or to paraphrase - same old same old. Just two December Moths last night, one in each trap. Still, looking on the bright side, that's a 100% increase on the last time !!
East Lydford 12 & 14/12/15
Nothing in the traps on the 12th, and only a solitary female December Moth on the 14th., but two or three Winter Moths have regularly been assembling on the kitchen windows most evenings - as usual, never more than one per pane. I'm hoping for better things tonight, though, as it's unseasonally warm, and with little moonlight. Ever hopeful !!
A swimming caterpillar...
Whilst on holiday in southern France this summer, we rescued this Goat Moth caterpillar from the Lac de Ste Croix, where it was struggling in the water some dozen yards offshore. The lake is in fact a reservoir and has variable water levels as a result; in several areas there are groups of willows that are some way offshore when water levels are high. The caterpillar must have emerged from the willow stems at the wrong time and had to swim for it.
Once placed on dry land, the caterpillar soon recovered, and burrowed down amongst the stones.
Langport 15-16 December 2015
A single December moth and - more surprisingly - a Rusty Dot Pearl Udea ferrugalis
in the trap last night.
Citizen Science survey
Susan Anders (Butterfly Conservation) has asked me to publicise a survey set up by Dr Hilary Geoghegan, looking at motivations around citizen science. "Citizen science is now an established means of collecting, analysing and responding to data about the natural environment. However, in order to fulfil its potential, we need to know more about why people participate.
This survey is funded by UKEOF - a partnership of public sector organisations with an interest in using and providing evidence from environmental observations. UKEOF have a citizen science working group committed to understanding the human dimensions of participating in citizen science.
The survey link is: https://bristol.az1.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_8AZvEFdrpkuOxdH
Data from the survey will be anonymous and will form the basis of an open access report on what motivates people to participate in environmental citizen science projects and other environmental volunteering opportunities. We are interested in attracting a range of responses from citizen scientists and environmental volunteers across a variety of projects in the UK relating to the environment, including tree health, air quality, biodiversity and pollination.
If you could please circulate this survey through your networks, social media and other online resources, that would be very much appreciated. The survey will be open until 20th December."
Langport 10-12 December 2015
The light trap has attracted nothing over the last few days but there were a Mottled Umber and a Winter moth at the outside light on Saturday night - when the trap was switched off!
Winter's day ramblings
Chris, I know your answer was ironic but I do wonder if there is an advantage to moths coming to light traps. Some moth species start out as singletons in the trap but gradually become more common over the years. I think of my trap as being a giant moth mating agency where lonely heart(and Dart) moths can find new partners. There must be a reason why different species seem to sort themselves out whilst in the trap and we find that moths of a feather have flocked together.
Paul - It was probably being a good little moth, and staying away from the bright lights of Lydford which its mum had warned it about.
At some point I would expect moths to develop an aversion to bright lights, as it cannot be evolutionarily advantageous for them to spend half their lives in our moth traps, or sitting in full view on walls next to security lights. On that day our moth traps will become useless and we will have to resort to smearing bizarre concoctions on posts again...
A Festive dark form of Silver Y in the garden by my Black-light this morning, just 1 Red-line Quaker and a December Moth in the trap. Seasonal Greetings to one and all.
East Lydford 9/12/15
Technically a "Nil Return", as there were no moths in the traps this morning, but I did see a Feathered Thorn "loitering with intent" just before I went to bed last night - does that count ? It was probably being a good little moth, and staying away from the bright lights of Lydford which its mum had warned it about.
Ectoedemia septembrella on Hypericum, Prior Park, Bath
Found a number of Ectoedemia septembrella leaf mines on shrubby Hypericum today at Prior Park in Bath. One still tenanted with a feeding larva evident and one with vacated pupal cocoon still within the mine (blotch).
East Lydford 7/12/15
Lots of flies,hundreds of midges, and one solitary brave (or foolhardy) Feathered Thorn took shelter from the rain and found its way into the trap.
Rather unusual Winter Moth in the trap this morning
I thought last night was the only possible one for a few days..still grim. Just one Mottled Umber and one December moth. But Lots of Agon.alstromeriana in the wood store.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Thursday night 3 each of December Moth and Mottled Umber and last night 10 Mottled Umber and 3 December Moth braved the wind!
East Lydford 2/12/15
You're doing well, Pam - I had nothing at all on 1/12, bar a couple of midges and dungflies, and only one each Agonopterix alstromeriana and Clouded Drab last night. I was very surprised to see the Drab, as I have only ever seen them in the Spring before now, and the textbooks agree that is the normal flight season.
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Last night just 4 Mottled Umber plus one Caddisfly but yesterday 27 Mottled Umber and one earwig!