Sunday, 28 September 2014

As good as it gets

As far as luck with migrants is concerned, last night was about as good as it gets locally for me.  I ran a couple of traps at our Holtspur Bottom reserve near Beaconsfield, Bucks and got just short of 50 species.  I'd hoped to tick off most of the Sallows on this visit but in the end the only one which turned up was Barred Sallow (in some numbers, including several of the smart dark orange form).  Along with a handful of Light Emeralds, a single Small Emerald came to one of the lights as an unusual second brood.  Pride of place, though, goes to the tiny and rather battered female Gem illustrated below.

Gem, Holtspur Bottom 27th September

Back at Westcott, Bucks the garden actinic trap was again heaving with Lunar Underwings (335 of them, almost outnumbering the crane-flies!).  36 species were caught, of which Chestnut and Yellow-line Quaker were firsts for this season.  A new-brood Beautiful Hook-tip also appeared, as did a Marbled White Spot which is another species not normally associated with this time of year.  Two migrants graced the trap, one more Dark Sword-grass (my fourth of the last few weeks) and a smart Vestal.

Dave Wilton

Yellow-line Quaker, Westcott 27th September

Marbled White Spot, Westcott 27th September

Vestal, Westcott 27th September

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