Wednesday, 12 August 2015


Having helped out at an RSPB sleepout in Wytham Woods on Saturday, where most of the moth traps were infested with Hornets (but also had some quite good moths in - my favourite was an Olive, a species I've not seen before), I wasn't altogether surprised to have three of them buzzing around the trap on Sunday night. They're fairly amiable creatures, so I wasn't terribly worried. Otherwise, recent catches here in Wolvercote, Oxon., have been pretty standard - we were pleased to have a Lime-speck Pug on 5th August, a pleasingly identifiable species which we don't seem to be guaranteed of every year. More recently, we had either a Toadflax or a Foxglove Pug on 10th August - its size seems to indicate the former, but its markings closer to the latter; and we've not been able to reach a conclusion on the third species, a micro from 5th August - it's an Acleris, but I've not decided which. Any help with those latter two very much appreciated!

Steve and Xander Goddard

Lime-speck Pug, 5/8/15

Toadflax or Foxglove Pug, 10/8/15

Unknown Acleris sp., 5/8/15


  1. There's 2 main identifying features to separate Foxglove from Toadflax Pug. First - and most reliable - is the basal patch and degree of blackening in the area. I can't see any in your image, but it looks worn. Second, the outer edge of the median band kinks in in Foxglove. This second feature is not 100% reliable, but almost. So if I had to decide which I would say it looks more like a Toadflax Pug. I presume for the last image, the fog came down suddenly, but it is Acleris laterana.

  2. Many thanks, Peter -- sorry, the last image is especially rotten quality (not that the others are much better), but the only snap I managed to get of the critter.


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