Monday, 22 September 2014

Flower power

A note of thanks to our esteemed blogmaster Dave for his encouraging headline the other day: Gardens are best. Inspired by this, and because our immediate neighbours were away overnight, I plonked the Robinson trap in our main flowerbed which I normally avoid because of the lamp's dazzle.

Results included Orange, Centre-barred and plain Sallow, Oak Hook-tip, Brindled Green, Dusky Thorn, Copper (or Svensson's Copper) Underwing, Flame Carpet, Yellow Shell, Ruby Tiger, Angle Shades, three shades of Lunar Underwing and a new one for me, the Marbled White Spot above.

There was also a Comma butterfly and a Blair's Shoulder-knot. I've always been full of admiration for Dr Kenneth Blair, a retired curator at the Natural History Museum in London, who discovered all three on the Isle of Wight between 1946 and 1951 and is immortalised as a result (at least among moth enthusiasts).  Martin Wainwright, Thrupp, Oxon


  1. For those of you wanting to identify the Copper Underwings, the Ceredigion Moth Group recently posted a nice pair of images that will help. I usually approach the moth from the head end, using thumb above and first two fingers below and grab the head and thorax. Turn it over and open up the wings, identify and let go. The Friar Tuck appearance of the thorax afterwards tells me which I've done and the moth seems happy enough.

  2. Nice one, Martin. Marbled White Spot is yet another moth which wouldn't normally be around at this time in the season. So many unexpected species seem to have made an attempt at an extra brood this year.

  3. Thanks very much both. It is interesting how many late broods there seem to be. I'm not sure I'm up to the Copper Underwing test but will keep it handy in case I feel brave. Much obliged, M


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