Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock Sunday 30 October 2016
51 moths of 13 species. Nothing new but nice to see Feathered Thorn (4) and Merveille du Jour (4)
Bishop's Hull 30/10/16
was FFG otherwise very little.
Like Steve I also had a Cypress Carpet on the 29th.
Cocklake 26th and 29th October
Two late postings :
26th : 38 moths 15 spp. Unlike Paul my single Straw dot was pretty fresh.
29th : 49 moths 15spp. Mostly Setaceous hebrew character (14), Nov.agg (8) and Large wainscot (5) but surprised to find a Rosy footman in good condition. A very fresh Cypress carpet, the first for some years, mentioned only as this was the moth that first got me into this about 10 years ago, and a Satellite which I had not seen before.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Belated report for Friday night. 19 moths of 12 species but 4 FFY, namely Dark Sword-grass, Red-line Quaker (first for 3 years and only my second record), Barred Sallow and The Sallow. Beaded Chestnut the most numerous (6). Also of note my second Flounced Chestnut this month and a pristine Silver Y (my latest record).
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 11.8 degrees
45 moths of 19 species including one second brood Cypress Pug which Mapmate thinks is late. We had the first brood in June
Pen Elm, Taunton
I gave the actinic a try and had a distinctly different range of species from Friday night. Only 22 moths but 15 species including the migrants: Gem, Rush Veneer and Diamond-back Moth. I also had my first Grey Shoulder-knot since 2014 and a Feathered Thorn (FFY). The rest of the catch was made up as follows: Merveille du Jour, LYU (3), Beaded Chestnut (3), Common Marbled Carpet (2), Green-brindled Crescent (2), November Moth (2), Square-spot Rustic, Barred Sallow, Tachystola acroxantha and LBAM.
East Lydford 29/10/16
Numbers back down again - 21 in total, of 8 species, including FFY Merveille du Jour (one of my favourite moths), and an extremely late Straw Dot (quite faded, so not likely to be a third generation). Only one small black beetle, but nearly a dozen assorted Caddises, which seem to be having a good year.
Several Gypsonoma dealbana
blotches on Oak at Netherclay LNR today. Photo shows the characteristic feeding pattern and frass-covered silk tube (on underside of leaf) inhabited by the larva:
Pen Elm, Taunton
A big improvement with 39 moths of 18 species including the NFG - Scrobipalpa costella* (pic) and two FFY - Red-line Quaker and four well marked Dark Chestnut (pics). The rest of the catch was as follows: Black Rustic, Chestnut, Common Marbled Carpet (2), November Moth agg. (3), Square-spot Rustic (2), Beaded Chestnut (2), Green-brindled Crescent (2), LYU, Lesser Yellow Underwing (7), Blair's Shoulder Knot, Lunar Underwing, Barred Sallow, LBAM (4), Acleris sparsana (2), Tachystola acroxantha (3).
*Note: my previous identification of Hypatima rhomboidella was incorrect. Many thanks to Dave Grundy @dgcountryside for correctly identifying it as Scrobipalpa costella
Ammerdown Park 28/10/2016
2 actinics run and a somewhat disappointing catch. I noted almost as many species of leaf-miners in a few moments' search around the traps. Where have all the noctuids gone?
Green-brindled Crescent (1)
Feathered Thorn (2)
November Moth agg. (4)
Grey Pine Carpet (4)
Spruce Carpet (1)
Clay Triple-lines (1)
Red-green Carpet (2) - new to 10km square
Copper Underwing agg. (1)
The Clay Triple-lines was freshly emerged - the books note an occasional second brood in the autumn.
27th. Near S. Petherton
A warmer night here too. Most common were November Moth agg. and Beaded Chestnut with 12 each. Also FFY Large Wainscot, Red-line & Yellow-line Quaker, and Black Rustic(5). Always glad to see Barred Sallow(5) Green Brindled Crescent(4) and Red Green Carpet(3). Like Paul I also had a fresh looking (and large sized) Brimstone and also a fresh (and small sized!) Willow Beauty. 16 macros species and 6 micros species which were LBAM, Acleris sparsana, Diamond backed moth, White shouldered House moth, Garden Rose Tortrix and a Monopsis sp. I'm still struggling with!
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 9.5 degrees
32 moths of 13 species including one first for the autumn - a Winter Moth. Not FFY as we had one in January !
East Lydford 27/10/16
A much milder night produced the largest catch of moths here for 3 weeks. 42 in total, of 12 species. including FFY November Moth agg (11) and Feathered Thorn. 10 Beaded Chestnuts and 6 Red-line Quakers were the most numerous of the others
Quite late appearances were Brimstone Moth (actually looking fairly fresh - third brood ?), Setaceous Hebrew Character and Snout. Lunar Underwings down to 2 individuals - I suspect they may not have done too well this year after all, in spite of a reasonably good start, due to the prolonged cold weather this month.
mine on Crack Willow at Netherclay LNR today.
Paul and John - thank you for your advice regarding the five furry larvae. :-)
I found this fragile little pupal case today. Sadly, it flew out of my hand a moment after I photographed it.
Can someone please advise which genus or species it could belong to?
I think the top larva is probably a Brimstone Moth, as they do have a "spike/hump" in the middle, but the second one could be one of many Geometers. The moth does look like A. hastiana, and they are very variable. There is a good range of different examples shown on the UK Moths website, which I find helpful - photos are often better than drawn illustrations. You may like to send your photo to Paul Wilkins, who is willing to confirm IDs of micros - email@example.com He will happily advise. It may be helpful to identify what larvae are feeding on, if possible - bear in mind that they can often be found resting on other plants than their food plant, so definite feeding observation is important. If you can find the time, you can keep larvae in captivity, and breed them through to maturity - then you'll know for sure.
Moth and Larva ID 26/10/2016
I found these caterpillars and micro at Shapwick Heath NNR today. I can't work out what the larva are but I think the micro might be Acleris hastiana
? Does anyone know what they could be?
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 8.7degrees
55 moths of 16 species including FFY Feathered Thorn (4).
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock 25/10/2016. Min temp 8.9c
I thought a slightly milder night had more promise than of late,but when I checked at 2100 the traps were quiet. When I checked again at 2300 a "mizzle/fog" was coming down and it was raining moths !. The total in the morning was 139 moths of 26 species, including 5 FFY : Mottled Umber (1) ; Feathered Thorn (2) ; Yellow-line Quaker (31) ; Merveille du Jour (5) and Dark Chestnut (2). Others of note : Acleris laterana (1) ; Rusty-dot Pearl (1) ; Eudonia angustea (1) ; Pine Carpet (1) ; Spruce Carpet (23) ; Red-green Carpet (18) ; November Moth agg.(11) ; Copper Underwing (1) ; Green-brindled Crescent (6) ; Angle Shades (2) ; Beaded Chestnut (12) ; Red-line Quaker (2) ; Chestnut (1) ; Grey Shoulder-knot (1) ; Black Rustic (7) ; LYU (4) ; Setaceous Hebrew Character (1) and a late and very worn Straw Dot.
East Lydford 25/10/16
Still not a lot happening here. 7 moths of 6 species, all in the MV trap. Just 2 Beaded Chestnuts, and singletons of Lunar Underwing, Green-brindled Crescent, Yellow-line Quaker, Cypress Carpet (second brood), and FFY Figure of Eight.
Other bodies in the trap were 4 Caddises (including a Great Sedge), one small black beetle, and an Ichneumon Wasp. Nice to know that there are a few beasts about.
Bishop's Hull 25/10/16
T Min 9.2°C. 11 moths of nine species. LBAM, Blastobasis lacticolella
, November Moth agg., Common Marbled Carpet, Large Yellow Underwing, Green-brindled Crescent, Black Rustic, Beaded Chestnut and Red-line Quaker.
Tree House, Butleigh
A warm damp night brought the moths out at last,nothing exiting but 42 of 16spp, including 8 Nov. Moth agg. 8 Beaded Chestnut, 6 Barred Sallow, 2 Merveille du Jour, 2 Green-brindled Cresc. 2 red-green Carpets, Spruce carpet, Sallow, Large wainscot. A couple of micros LBAM and Garden Rose Tortrix.
The third one down seems to me to have the lateral markings of a buff ermine but a good side view would confirm that.
`ruby tigers don't have lateral markings.
Netherclay LNR 23/10/16
and P. stettinensis
mines sharing the same Alder leaf; beside the R. Tone at Netherclay.
Holcombe, 23 October 2016
The leaves fall from the beech trees and cover the grass, and the green islands of the leaf-miner Stigmella tityrella
get blown to earth with them.
The other beech-mining nepticulid, Stigmella hemargyrella, has had a really good year around here. The mine looks quite different (I have never seen this species create green islands, for a start). Here is a vacated mine from the University of Bath campus last week.
you may well be right about your caterpillars, but there are several very similar ones (particularly in the early stages), e.g. White & Buff Ermines. The best way to be sure is to keep them in captivity if you can, and breed them through to maturity. It takes time and patience, but at least you'll know for sure !!
Edington Churchyard 21/10/16
I left my actinic trap in the churchyard overnight, although I was not too hopeful given the cold night forecast. In the event, the only moths to appear were two Green-brindled Crescents. Could have been worse !
Pen Elm, Taunton. T Min 5.3°C
Disappointingly just 9 moths of 7 species with a Large Wainscot and Pine Carpet the best.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 5 degrees
13 moths of 10 species including FFY - a Yellow-line Quaker. We also had a surprisingly late and very fresh Pale-shouldered Brocade We had our last on June 5.
Langford Heathfield 20/10/16
Several Ectoedemia occultella
mines found on Birch at Langford Heathfield today:
For Interest from VC10
Not a very productive week on the Isle of Wight either, apart from trapping a first ever Radford's Flame Shoulder. Four have turned up on the island in the last few weeks as well a 9 on Isles of Scilly. They may be heading North!
I was delighted to find these five hairy caterpillars in a stretch of nettles.
I've listed them as Ruby Tiger (Phragmatobia fuliginosa) but would appreciate confirmation of this.
Here they are:
East Lydford 18/10/16
Another poor catch - just 4 moths, 3 species. Nothing of interest.
Ectoedemia angulifasciella mine
On wild rose, Camerton near Radstock.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
In view of the cooler weather coming in, I decided to run the trap last night. I had just 15 moths of 7 species. By way of compensation there was an FFG Flounced Chestnut and FFY Spruce Carpet. Garden list is now 498 but I don't think I'll hit the magic 500 this year!
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock 16/10/2016. Min temp 8.8c
26 moths of 12 species. FFY were Red-line Quaker (2) and November moth agg. (3). Others of note : Scrobipalpa costella (1) ; Spruce carpet (2) ; Cypress carpet (1) ; Red-green carpet (1) - Green-brindled Crescent (2) ; Barred sallow (2).
Pen Elm, Taunton. T Min 9.3°C
20 moths of 10 species last night. with Brick and November Moth agg. both FFY and Blair's Shoulder-knot, Barred Sallow (3), Green-brindled Crescent (2), Black Rustic, Beaded Chestnut, Lunar Underwing (8), Setaceous Hebrew Character and Lesser Yellow Underwing making up the numbers.
Bishop's Hull 15/10/16
Just four of four here last night: Carcina quercana
, Rush Veneer, Common Marbled Carpet and Chestnut.
This afternoon I found a final instar Purple Bar larva on Hedge Bedstraw in the garden:
East Lydford 15/10/16
In spite of some heavy rain overnight, a 20% increase in numbers and a 33% increase in species !! 6 moths of 4 species this time. 2 each Lunar Underwings and Barred Sallows, and 1 each Beaded Chestnut and Common Marbled Carpet. Lots of small Caddises too - they presumably don't mind the wet.
East Lydford 13/10/16
It get worser and worser!! Just 5 moths this time, 3 Lunar Underwings, 1 Black Rustic and 1 Barred Sallow. For the second time in a row, nothing in the actinic trap.
Re: French Moths.
Thank you very much, Nigel.
Ref: French Moths
the 'Guide des Papillons Nocturnes de France' by R. Robineau describes 1620 species and can be purchased from Atropos Books:
Moth Field Guides for France.
I am going to south France in May/June next year and I was wondering if anyone knows of any good moth field guides for France? If there aren't, what is the best way of identifying the moths in that area?
Convolvulus Hawk-moth from Launcherley
Andy Webb emailed me on 10th October - he found a Convolvulus Hawk-moth on a towel on his washing line in Launcherley. His children were very excited!
Convolvulus Hawk-moth ©Andy Webb 2016
Tree House Butleigh
Winter is here - just 9 moths of 4 spp, Lunar UW, Beaded Cheatnut, Barred Sallow and Blair's Shoulder-knot. Hopefully some warmer nights heading our way.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7.2 degrees
18 moths of 8 species including FFY - November Moth (agg)
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock 11/10/2016 Min temp 7.2c
Same here Paul, Two traps run and a grand total of 16 moths. A Green-brindled Crescent was FFY, others were LBAM ; Common Marbled Carpet ; Angle Shades ; Lunar Underwing (7) ; Beaded Chestnut ; Black Rustic (3) and a Setaceous Hebrew Character.
East Lydford 11/10/16
I didn't think that last night's conditions were any worse for moths than other nights recently, but clearly the moths thought otherwise. Only 12 moths in total, 10 Lunar Underwings, 1 Beaded Chestnut and 1 Red-line Quaker. Hardly worth the electricity.
Just emerged - male November Moth (agg.) from caterpillar accidentally collected along with fallen elm seeds at Nunney Combe in late May.
Pen Elm, Taunton. T Min 11.1°C
A good selection last night with 56 moths of 22 species including: Mallow (FFY), Large Wainscot (2, FFY), Clepsis consimilana, Barred Sallow, Large Ranunculus and Rush Veneer (2). Earlier in the day I disturbed a suspected Acleris schalleriana in the garden shed - confirmation pending.
Confirmed - many thanks to James McGill
Sat. 8th. Nr. S. Petherton
Having not trapped since 21/9 I wasn't sure what was going to turn up! No exotic migrants but a Merv de Jour (NFY) was good to see, and it was unusual in that it was actually in the trap. A quite small Beautiful Hooktip was also a bit of a surprise! November Moth agg. (2) was NFY as were a healthy total of 12 Black Rustic. Also Blairs Shoulder-knot (2).
Singles of Light Emerald, Garden Carpet, Red-green Carpet. Most common was Common Marbled Carpet(19). A total of 88 moths: 18 macros and a single LBAM. I haven't had a Sallow this year, not sure if I've missed them or they're having a bad year. (But at least Barred Sallow seem to be doing well - a total of 6 last night).
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe- Min Temp 9.1 degrees
34 moths of 16 species including FFY - Merveille-du Jour and a Turnip Moth.
Tree House Butleigh
Turned a bit chilly here, 52 macros of 8spp, 3 barred Sallows and a Feathered Thorn FF season.
East Lydford 8/10/16
Much better last night, no doubt due to the evil East wind having dropped off - makes quite a difference to the ambient temperature. 54 moths, but still low numbers of species (11). The most numerous were Lunar Underwings again (23), Beaded Chestnuts (9), Common Marbled Carpets (7) and Black Rusrics (6). One FFY - a Green-brindled Crescent, and there was a Brimstone Moth whch was so worn and faded that the red spots were almost invisible. Still only a few Craneflies, but lots of Caddises.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Slightly better numbers than a few nights ago - 31 moths of 9 species. No FFY. It's a poor night when Light Brown Apple Moth is the most numerous species!
Netherclay LNR 7/10/16
I trapped at Netherclay until 01:30h this morning. 152 moths of 24 species (21 macro, 3 micro (Rhomboid Tortrix,
Garden Rose Tortrix and Blastobasis lacticolella
)). Small Fan-footed Wave, Garden Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet (27), Double-striped Pug, Large Yellow Underwing (15), Lesser Yellow Underwing, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Square-spot Rustic, Black Rustic, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Green-brindled Crescent, Red-line Quaker, Beaded Chestnut, Lunar Underwing, Barred Sallow (47), Sallow, Angle Shades, Silver Y, Straw Dot, Snout and November Moth agg.
East Lydford 6/10/16
Very poor result last night, only 15 moths of 3 species, viz. 8 Lunar Underwings, 5 Beaded Chestnuts and 2 FFY Yellow-line Quakers. It's not only the micros staying at home !
Well done Peter - quite a thrill getting the Clifden Nonpareil, you lucky man !!
Kestrels Rise , Little Quantock 5/10/2016 Min temp. 4.7c
14 Lunar Underwings and singles of just six other species. FFY were a Sallow and a Beaded Chestnut. The micros must all have been tucked up with a hot waterbottle!
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 6.9 degrees
30 moths of 7 species including FFY - Green-brindled Crescent (2) and. for me the most exciting a life-time first a Clifden Nonpareil.
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
I thought the same as Steve but had just 20 moths of 10 species. FFY were Small Dusty Wave (my first October record) and Beaded Chestnut.
Pen Elm, Taunton. T Min 12.4°C
It looked like being the best night of the week for moths but only 36 visited of 18 species. It was well worth it though for a fresh Pink-barred Sallow, my first at this location.
Tree House Butleigh
84 moths of only 14spp. Lunar Underwings still by far the most numerous at 55, followed by Beaded Chestnuts and LYUWs at 7 each, also a Large Ranunculus, Mallow, Blair's Shoulder-Knot, Black Rustic and a nice fresh Clepsis consimilana.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min Temp 9.8 degrees
61 moths of 13 species including FFY - a Red-green Carpet.
East Lydford 3/10/16
Another cold night, another unvaried catch. 46 moths, including 32 Lunar Underwings, and only 9 species. 3 Chestnuts were the first for almost 12 months.
Caught 14 species from 39 moths. FFY - Beaded Chestnut, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Black Rustic, Barred Sallow (3) and Large Ranunculus.
Rodden Nature Reserve, Frome 30/09/2016
I had a session looking for leaf mines and early stages at my local nature reserve on the outskirts of Frome the other day. Among some more common mines I was happy to find the following three species which appear to be good finds for the east of the county. Many thanks to Paul Wilkins and Chris Iles for helping with confirmation.
Adaina microdactyla (Hemp Agrimony plume moth)
Stigmella catharticella on Buckthorn (Rhamnus catharticus)
Phyllocnistis saligna on Crack Willow (Salix fragilis)
From a post on the Migrant Lepidoptera (GB & Ireland) facebook page. Oleander Hawkmoth from Chard, presumably yesterday. Secondhand information from the poster who is not a member of SMG but gave his permission to post here.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - Min temp 7 degrees
17 moths of eight species including our first Chestnut since March.
Whitefield, Wiveliscombe - 30 Sept . Min Temp 8.3 degrees
12 species including FFY - Blair's Shoulder-knot and Red Line Quaker.
East Lydford 1/10/16
Much colder last night, and number correspondingly low, so it takes very little time to sort them out !! Just 39 moths, and only 7 species. There were 28 Lunar Underwings, so they continue to dominate. Otherwise only one moth of interest, a pale Vestal.