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current posts

Fri 30th April 2021 10:06 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
29/4/21 - yet another poor night - just 5 Hebrew Characters and a FFY Shuttle-shaped Dart.  Hey ho.
Thu 29th April 2021 10:37 by Ian Mathieson
Norton sub Hamdon
Slightly better moths yesterday morning with my 3rd Seraphim in 10 years being the highlight. Other firsts were Broken-barred Carpet, Brimstone, Brindled Pug, Nut-tree Tussock and Muslin Moth.
Wed 28th April 2021 17:16 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
I hoped for more but ended up with 14 moths of 10 species last night. There was at least some variety - FFY were Brindled Pug, Scorched Carpet, Brimstone Moth, Waved Umber and Shuttle-shaped Dart.

I find it interesting that , while numbers are low, some species are appearing earlier; for example, these are my first April records for Scorched Carpet and Waved Umber, and the Shuttle-shaped Darts were the first April records since 2014.

I've had regular sightings in the garden of Scarlet Tiger caterpillars recently so I'm optimistic I'll get some adults this summer!

Wed 28th April 2021 16:18 by Sue Davies
The House Butleigh
Another dismal garden trap. 2 Muslin, 1 Common Quaker, 1Hebrew Character, just 1 highlight, a Dark Sword-grass.
Wed 28th April 2021 15:26 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise Little Quantock, 27/04 min temp 6.9c
28 moths of 13 species, also 92 caddisflies of 3 species and an ichneumon wasp. Three FFY moths : Red-green Carpet ; Grey Pug and Lunar Marbled Brown. The usual suspects made up the rest.
Wed 28th April 2021 12:09 by Mike Strange
27/04/2021 BoS
Five Moths, Five species last night, after a few completely moth less nights, 1 Hebrew Character, 1 common Quaker, 1 Shuttle Shaped dart FFY, 1 Brindled Pug FFY in Light trap and 1 Brimstone FFY on wall. Plus approx 40 Sedge flies and 8 Mosquitos!
Wed 28th April 2021 11:37 by Nigel Cottle
Night of 27/4.

I ran one trap in a Kingston St. Mary garden until 00:30h this morning by which time frequent showers had set in.

46 moths of 23 species included Chinese Character, Red Twin-spot Carpet, Small Phoenix, Red-green Carpet, Water Carpet, V-Pug, Oak-tree Pug, Seraphim, Scorched Carpet, Pale Mottled Willow, Shuttle-shaped Dart and Least Black Arches. A Twenty-plume Moth was the only micro.

Wed 28th April 2021 11:05 by Nigel Parsons
Berkley Marsh, Frome - 27th April
I put the trap out last night, despite the forecast of rain, hoping that being milder I would get more moths. However, I managed only 13 moths of 7 species of which 2 FFY - Coxcomb Prominent 2 and Silver Y 2 - and another Swallow Prominent. Looks like more cold nights coming up but maybe better next week - let's hope so!!
Wed 28th April 2021 08:48 by Maurice Pugh
Curry Rivel 27.4.2021
Trapped until 2330 hrs.

10 moths of 6 species.

NFY were Pale Prominent, Shuttle-shaped Dart (3) and Spectacle

Others were Light Brown Apple Moth, Brimstone Moth (2), Nut-tree-tussock (2).

Tue 27th April 2021 09:53 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
26/4/21 - yet another poor night - just 5 moths - 3 Hebrew Characters, 1 Common Quaker and 1 Brindled Beauty.  Early cornflakes again.
Mon 26th April 2021 11:12 by Nigel Parsons
Berkley Marsh, Frome
Very limited trapping this month with generally low numbers of moths and species. Managed to get 17 moths / 7 species on 8th April with Bee Moth being FFY, only 7 moths on 19th with no FFY, slightly better on 20th with 39 moths of 12 species, including another Dotted Chestnut and 3 FFY - Shoulder Stripe 1, Swallow Prominent 1 and Lunar Marbled Brown 1. I have also had 3 Scarlet Tiger caterpillars in the garden - even though there is no Common Comphrey in the garden, found a large pupa whilst digging in soil near a privet hedge so I guess it may a Privet Hawk-moth, Mompha subbistrigella are appearing at shed windows nearly every day and on checking several Teasel heads, of which there are hundreds in the garden, I found 2 larvae of Endothenia marginana and 4 larvae of Endothenia gentianaeana. I understand that it is likely that virtually every Teasel head will have a solitary larva of these species, and possibly others, but they do not emerge as adults until June. I gather the adults are more difficult to tell apart than the larvae.
Sun 25th April 2021 21:05 by Paul Chapman
Trapped with Dave Nevitt, Richard Andrews & Bob Fleetwood till around 1.00am by which time temperature had fallen to 3 degrees.

Highlight was Pammene argyrana (subject to confirmation). In total, about 100 moths of 28 species including as well Acleris hastiana, Frosted Green (3), Water Carpet, Early Tooth-striped, Grey Birch, White-pinion Spotted, Lunar Marbled Brown & Pine Beauty.

Pammene Argyrana

Sun 25th April 2021 09:56 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
24/4/21 - A slight improvement in numbers, but nothing new here.  17 in total - Hebrew Character (11), Common Quaker (2), Early Thorn (2), Muslin Moth and Clouded Drab.  Lots of moonlight and freshish breeze unhelpful, even if it was a bit less cold.
Sun 25th April 2021 09:19 by Maurice Pugh
Curry Rivel 24.4.2021
Trapped until 2330hrs 24.4.2021 No cloud, bright moon and temp. at 6 degrees at 2300hrs.

9 moths of 6 species. Light Brown Apple Moth, Brindled Pug and Small Quaker. Brimstone Moth x 4, Waved Umber and Flame Shoulder all NFY.

Fri 23rd April 2021 09:23 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
22/4/21 - it gets direr and direr - just 4 Clouded Drabs ans 2 Hebrew Characters.  Everyone on their knees and pray for some warmer nights please.
Thu 22nd April 2021 17:48 by Rob Grimmond
Possible Northern Drab
That's an interesting moth that James McGill found. The photos of this species that I've found on the Internet don't have the prominent transverse bars that this individual has, though that may be down to variability or it being a fresh specimen. It would perhaps be useful to post the photo on one of the moth Facebook pages for comment by those further north - e.g. "Recording Moths".
Thu 22nd April 2021 17:44 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Two moths on the wall today! One was Early Tooth-striped, which I've already recorded this year.  The other was FFY Esperia sulphurella, my only previous record of which was of two separate sightings in May 2015. The website records it as "occasional but generally distributed".Esperia sulphurella CSN 4.21
Thu 22nd April 2021 16:42 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
I just found an extremely early Buff Ermine in my porch, presumably an escapee from Tuesday night's catch.  About 3 weeks earlier than I have had one before.
Wed 21st April 2021 22:23 by Steve Chapple
James McGill, Staplegrove, Taunton
James sent me this to post earlier tonight.

"April has been as poor a month as I can remember for moths in my Taunton garden - averaging about 2 per night. The arrival of this moth last night was therefore surprising. It looks like a northern drab. I have only previously seen the larger saltmarsh form which is rather different in appearance. Thanks to David Agassiz and Paul Chapman for already commenting on this, and I would be interested to hear from anyone else who has a view on the identification."

Possible Northern Drab

Wed 21st April 2021 17:58 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise Little Quantock, 20/04 min temp 8.2c
I may not have Mains water and the broadband is delivered by snails but I do still get moths !  51 of 17 species. FFY were : Streamer (2) ; Muslin Moth (2) and Flame Shoulder. Twenty Plume and Acleris literana were the micro's and the rest comprised : Frosted Green ; Double-striped Pug (2) ; Brindled Pug (7) ; Early Thorn (3) ; Brindled Beauty (2) ; Early Grey (5) ; Clouded Drab ; Common Quaker (10) ; Twin-spotted Quaker ; Chestnut (2) ; Hebrew Character (7) and Red Chestnut (3).
Wed 21st April 2021 16:32 by Rob Grimmond
Virtual talk on 27th April - Much Ado about Mothing
A reminder that James Lowen will be giving his talk next Tuesday evening at 7.30 p.m. James is an excellent speaker, who gave a superb talk recently to the Somerset Ornithological Society, so this talk is not to be missed. For further details, go to link
Wed 21st April 2021 16:28 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
I gave the trap a go last night since no frost was forecast. Another measly total, this time 14 moths of 4 species. FFY was Muslin Moth. Despite the weather, Early Grey seems to be having a good year here, with the best figures for 4 years. There's a distinct lack of micros.
Wed 21st April 2021 15:17 by Nigel Cottle
Bishops Hull
Night of 20/4. Given the weather conditions only the third time I have put the trap out this month!

Nine moths of nine species: Caloptilia stigmatella was the only micro and Oak-tree Pug, Brimstone Moth, Nut-tree Tussock, Brindled Beauty, Shuttle-shaped Dart and Muslin Moth were all FFY

Wed 21st April 2021 12:16 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
20/4/21 - worse here than elsewhere still - just 9 moths altogether, 5 Hebrew Characters, 2 Clouded Drabs, and single Common Quaker and Brindled Beauty.  A small Caddis was a nice extra.  There was an Orange Tip butterfly in the garden yesterday, so all is not (quite) lost.
Wed 21st April 2021 11:03 by Ian Mathieson
Norton sub Hamdon
Similar conditions here as Sue is experiencing in Butleigh with similar poor results. Just 16 moths last night with Knot Grass and Mullein being firsts for the year.
This was the first night without frost for what seems like a long time and we must be close to the coldest average April night in recent years. I guess it's not just moth traps that aren't seeing any action and I wonder if the lengthy cold spell will hinder moths getting together for their next generation.
Wed 21st April 2021 10:46 by Sue Davies
Tree House Butleigh
Warmer night forecast so first session for while, still down to 3' here. Just 13 moths of 8 spp in the MV. FFY here Brimstone, Muslin, March Moth, Early Thorn and Nut-tree Tussock. Pretty terrible!
Tue 20th April 2021 14:00 by Steve Chapple
Pen Elm, Taunton
Not a lot to report recently except and a very early Scorched Carpet (on the 8th) and two day flying micros: Esperia sulphurella and Mompha epilobiella (thanks to James McGill for the ID).
Mon 19th April 2021 16:18 by Chris Iles
Chesterblade Hills, 18 April 2021
I am very happy to have been given permission to record at Chesterblade Hills rewilding project and ran two lights there last night, the first time I have done so anywhere other than at home since autumn 2019.  It is good to be back doing this, but not perhaps an ideal night, with frost on the ground and a temperature of -3 when I collected the moths at dawn.  Given the temperature it was good to just catch moths - 10 Hebrew Characters, 2 Brindled Beauties and a Common Quaker.

Brindled Beauties

Sun 18th April 2021 20:16 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock Sat.17/04 Min temp 2.4c
A Red Twin-spotted Carpet flying in the afternoon sun was FFY.  Despite the low temp overnight, a pretty good total of 39 moths between the two traps. Another FFY was Brindled Pug (2).  Others were : Frosted Green ; Shoulder Stripe ; Early Tooth-striped ; Early Thorn ; Brindled Beauty ; Early Grey (9) ; Clouded Drab (2) ; Common Quaker (11) ; Hebrew Character (5) ; Twin-spotted Quaker and Red Chestnut (4)......................On the subject of Angle Shades, the totals here for the last 6 years (since I started running two traps) 2016-11 ; 2017-6 ; 2018-11 ; 2019-21 and 2021-19. Traps were run 50 to 55 times in each year so it seems that there's been an increase here in the last couple of years.
Sun 18th April 2021 19:18 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
A curious point Rob.  Looking back over my records since 2006 (when I acquired my first MV trap), it seems that Angle Shades records have alternated, broadly speaking, with good years (10+ records p.a.) in the even-date years, and noticeably fewer records (less than 5 p.a.) in the odd-date years.  Recently this has been even more marked, with 2 records in 2017 and none in 2019.

It will be interesting to hear if anyone else has had a similar experience.

Sun 18th April 2021 16:58 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Last night I found an Angle Shades by our front door. The significance of this is the fact it's my first record since 2018. Up to 2016 I recorded around 3 to 7 a year, both spring and autumn, but since then records have been very sparse or non-existent. I don't know whether there has been a local decline and would be interested to hear whether anyone else has noticed a similar decline.
Sun 18th April 2021 08:47 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
17/4/21 - much the same as recent trappings - just 6 moths - 4 Hebrew Characters, 1 Common Quaker, and a FFY male Muslin Moth.

More early cornflakes.

Sat 17th April 2021 18:07 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
Having not yet trapped this month, I decided to dip my toe into the water last night. Unfortunately the forecast cloud failed to materialise and we ended up with a cold, clear, night.  I managed the grand total of 5 moths of 4 species. FFY were Parsnip Moth and Early Tooth-striped.
Fri 16th April 2021 15:51 by Pam Campbell
Hodderscombe Lodge garden
Another dire week here with only 2 moths ( Hebrew Characters ) in 5 days ! I did see the first Orange - tip butterfly of the year though .
Fri 16th April 2021 10:26 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
15/4/21 - again just managed double figures last night - 4 Hebrew Characters, 3 Clouded Drabs and singles of Early Grey, Common Quaker and Powdered Quaker.  Early toast and cornflakes again.
Thu 15th April 2021 15:12 by Mike Strange
just two again last night. 1Hebrew Character and 1 FFY Powdered Quaker.
Wed 14th April 2021 18:52 by Mike Strange
13/04/2021 BoS
Nothing worth reporting over the cold period. Last night 1 Common Quaker and what I believe to be a Strawberry Tortrix which flew off before i could get a photo!
Wed 14th April 2021 17:07 by Steve Pilkington
Cocklake 20th March.
Not much on the moth front to report but a Dotted bee fly in the garden this afternoon, a first for me.
Wed 14th April 2021 09:55 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
13/4/21 - a small recovery last night, but still only 11 moths, all Orthosias.  8 Hebrew Characters, 2 Common Quakers and a Clouded Drab.  Yet another early breakfast.  Roll on warmer nights.
Mon 12th April 2021 10:03 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
11/4/21 - it gets worserer and worserer - just 2 Hebrew Characters in the MV trap - another (very) early breakfast today.
Sat 10th April 2021 08:55 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
9/4/21 - still modest numbers - 15 in total, Clouded Drab (5), Common Quaker (4), Hebrew Character (3), Brindled Beauty and FFY Powdered Quaker (2).  Didn't take long to sort out - early breakfast again.
Fri 9th April 2021 23:25 by Chris Iles
Holcombe, 9 April 2021
12 moths of 6 species, the surprise being 5 Early Greys, a species I do not record here every year.  Honeysuckle is the foodplant and it has spread a bit around the fringes of the garden, which may explain the increase in numbers.
Fri 9th April 2021 15:21 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise, Little Quantock Thursday 8/4 Min temp 5.1c
35 moths of 10 species.  2 FFY : Frosted Green and Powdered Quaker.  The others comprised : Shoulder Stripe ; March Moth ; Early Grey (5) ; Clouded Drab (4) ; Common Quaker (8) ; Small Quaker ; Hebrew Character (9) and Red Chestnut (4).
Thu 8th April 2021 09:53 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
7/4/21 = still too cold for most moths it seems - 7 Hebrew Characters and a lonely Caddis shared more or less evenly between the two traps.  Ho hum.
Tue 6th April 2021 09:53 by Nigel Parsons
Berkley Marsh, Frome - 4th April
Decided to put the trap out on 4th as it seemed to be the last opportunity for several days owing to the cold weather. I wasn't expecting much but pleasantly surprised to get 30 moths of 14 species. These included a March Moth (possibly the last for this year), Early Thorn 2, Powdered Quaker 1, Streamer 1, Herald 1, and 4 FFY - Dotted Chestnut 1 (first for some years), Brindled Pug 1 (surprised that this has appeared before Double-striped Pug), Plutella xylostella 1 and Acleris hastiana 1. Hopefully, the weather will get a bit warmer soon!
Mon 5th April 2021 12:26 by Steve Chapple
Pen Elm, Taunton
27 moths of only 6 species. I am still awaiting some of my 'regulars' (eg. Twin-spot Quaker, Shoulder Stripe etc.) but nice to see my first Pale Pinion since 2017. LBAM was another FFY.
Mon 5th April 2021 09:42 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
4/4/21 - just managed to squeak into double figures last night, 10 moths, all in the MV trap, nothing in the Actinic.  4 Hebrew Characters, 3 Clouded Drabs, 2 Early Greys and a Common Quaker.  The rest of them stayed under their duvets - very wise.
Sun 4th April 2021 16:42 by Mike Strange
03/04/2021 BoS
Hard Frost last night resulting in 6 moths of 4 species. 3 Hebrew Characters, 1 each of Common Quaker, Early Grey and Clouded Drab.
Sat 3rd April 2021 18:56 by Mike Strange
02/04/2021 BoS
Only 5 Moths of 3 species last night. The usual suspects. 2 Common Quaker, 2 Hebrew Character and 1 Early Grey.
Sat 3rd April 2021 08:22 by Maurice Pugh
Curry Rivel
Trapped on 31st March 2021

8 moths of 8 species. NFY were Oak Beauty, Dark Chestnut, Dotted Chestnut and Nut-tree Tussock. No Quakers, unlike other moth'ers

Fri 2nd April 2021 17:49 by Tim Howard
Kestrels Rise , Little Quantock 01/4/2021 min temp 3.2c
Back to something more akin to this time of year.  21 moths of 7 species, nothing new.
Fri 2nd April 2021 10:25 by Nigel Parsons
Berkley Marsh, Frome - 30th &31st March
Managed to get the trap out a couple of times earlier this week when the weather was a bit milder. On 30th I had 57 moths of 13 species and these included 3 FFY, Brindled Beauty 3, Streamer 1 and Emmelina monodactyla 1. The 31st brought in 88 moths and again 13 species with 4 FFY, Muslin moth (male) 1, Purple Thorn 1, Engrailed 1 (male) and Yellow Horned 1 - the latter being new for me. Looks like it may be a week or so before it gets mild again for another trapping.
Fri 2nd April 2021 10:06 by Paul Newman
Pylle, Shepton Mallet
Addendum to 30/3/21 I found 3 more moths in my porch last night, presumably escapees from the last trap-opening on Wednesday - one more each Early Thorn and Common Quaker, and the first Micro of the year, Agonopterix alstromeriana, also the first here since 2018.
Fri 2nd April 2021 09:18 by Mike Strange
01/03/2021 BoS
A cold night resulting in 7 Moths of 4 species. 3 Hebrew Characters, 2 Common Quakers, 1Common Plume and 1Early Grey.
Fri 2nd April 2021 00:01 by Sue Davies
Butleigh garden
12spp last night, FFY Herald, Pale Pinion and Twenty- plume moth. Early greys in greater number than usual here too, expected set of Orthosias, Oak and Brindled Beauties, Brindled and D-S Pugs.
Thu 1st April 2021 19:34 by Mike Strange
31/03/2021 BoS
20 Moths 5 species last night. 9 Early Greys, 6 Common Quaker, 3 Common Plume, 1 Double Striped Pug and 1 Hebrew Character.
Thu 1st April 2021 16:25 by Rob Grimmond
Combe St. Nicholas, South Somerset
At last some good numbers last night - 39 moths of 10 species. It was my second highest March total since 52 in 2014. FFY were Shoulder Stripe, Water Carpet and Clouded Drab (2). Also of interest were 15 Early Greys (my highest count) and 3 Twin-spotted Carpet (my first multiple record).

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