Wednesday, 20 March 2019

The smartest Orthosia

Amongst 16 species, last night's garden catch included Acleris literana, Double-striped Pug and, best of all, a nice fresh Blossom Underwing which were all new for the year.  I also had my second example of Ypsolopha mucronella this month and this one stayed around long enough to be photographed.

Ypsolopha mucronella, Westcott 19th March

Acleris literana, Westcott 19th March

Blossom Underwing, Westcott 19th March

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Turnip for the books

The best garden result of the year so far, with not far short of 100 moths brought to the conservatory windows last night by the twin-30wt actinic light.  I had to keep going out to pot them up during the first few hours because our local Brown Long-eared Bat population was particularly active and they would keep coming right up to the windows.  Perhaps it is time to start running a normal trap once again! 

The moths included three species new for the year, Caloptilia rufipennella, Oak Nycteoline and an unexpected Turnip.  This is the first time I've had Turnip so early (prior to last night the earliest being 3rd May 2007) and is suggestive of a migrant rather than a home-grown example, but who really knows in these strange times?!

Oak Nycteoline, Westcott 15th March

Turnip Moth, Westcott 15th March

The full list was Caloptilia rufipennella (1), Agonopterix heracliana (3), Agonopterix ocellana (1), Emmelina monodactyla (2), March Moth (4), Oak Beauty (1), Turnip Moth (1), Small Quaker (8), Lead-coloured Drab (5), Common Quaker (36), Clouded Drab (20), Twin-spotted Quaker (4), Hebrew Character (6), Satellite (1) & Oak Nycteoline (2).

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Friday, 15 March 2019

Unknown Moth Larva

Unknown Moth Larvae


Found this larva in the garden today, any idea as to ID?



Thursday, 14 March 2019

A couple more species

Nine species ventured out in the garden last night despite all that wind from Storm Gareth and it was nice to get something other than the Orthosias which had been making up the catch almost exclusively since the weekend.  The two new ones were Early Thorn and Red Chestnut.

Early Thorn, Westcott 13th March

Red Chestnut, Westcott 13th March

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Brimstone Moth

This Brimstone Moth greeted me as I returned from shopping to my east-facing porch in Chalfont St Peter, Bucks at 11.20am this morning.  It was still there an hour later.

Wendy Wilson

Sunday, 10 March 2019

Grey Shoulder-knot.

Too windy and wet for my liking outside. I've run my garden trap once so far this year, catching some of the usual suspects.
This moth, however, turned up on my porch light, which is unusual in itself. Not all that unusual for most of you, I imagine, but, in around a decade of trapping, it's the first time I have ever seen this species.

Talking to Richard Ellis, who also lives in Chorleywood, VC 24, I was told he reckons to catch one in around every three years. My impression is that some contributors on here see it more often, or am I wrong about that? 

Friday, 8 March 2019

Psychidae moth larva at Dancersend

This morning I spotted a tiny (5mm) conical lump of lichen bits on a beech trunk at Dancersend. When I approached closer with my camera in macro mode it moved! I collected it and got more photos at home - not brilliant as I couldn't get the lighting right. I think it is one of the Psychidae, probably Luffia ferchaultella, but then spotted that Albertini and Hall had a record of Luffia lapidella on my Dancersend Moths master list. I thought this was the much rarer species, but I can see there's probably been some splitting in recent years. Will I need to breed it out to be sure? I also got a video of the front part of the larva trying to reattach itself to a twig, but not sure I can load this here.

Mick Jones

Westcott, Bucks

The lack of posts here over the past week presumably means that others are also getting little apart from Orthosia species.  Twin-spotted Quaker was added to the Westcott garden list on 28th February, taking the macro species count to 22 which is a record for the end of that month, then Lead-coloured Drab and Early Grey followed on 1st March, but there had been nothing additional until last night when a Dark Chestnut turned up.  There have been a few micro-moth additions, though.  Agonopterix alstromeriana and Epiphyas postvittana were first seen here on 28th February and have been followed by Ypsolopha mucronella (2nd March), Tortricodes alternella (3rd) and Diurnea fagella (5th).  Even during the coldest and wettest nights I've been averaging about 30 moths per session with Common Quaker now the most frequent.  As an example, last night's catch was fairly typical:  Small Quaker (9), Lead-coloured Drab (1), Common Quaker (15), Clouded Drab (4), Twin-spotted Quaker (2), Hebrew Character (6), Grey Shoulder-knot (1) plus the Dark Chestnut already mentioned.  If you haven't already, it is time to brush the dust off those traps!

Diurnea fagella, Westcott 5th March

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks