Sunday, 4 October 2015

Another Brick on the wall...

Brick, Westcott 3rd October

In fact two Bricks to the garden trap at Westcott, Bucks.  It proved to be my 300th macro species of the year here, which means that by the end of December the garden should have surpassed 2014's record macro total of 307.  This is quite amazing considering how dire we all thought the first six months of this year were!

Mention of Brick reminds me that this is another common species which can cause some confusion on first sighting, in particular with Yellow-line Quaker, so I've added the photo below of both moths side-by-side:

Yellow-line Quaker (left) and Brick (right), 3rd October

The outer red and yellow cross-line of Brick is nowhere near as straight as that on Yellow-line Quaker and even on worn specimens of Brick you can usually still see some of the red reticulations which are obvious across all of the forewing on fresh examples. 

Considering how cold it got last night (only just above freezing here) I was quite pleased with the catch to a single actinic trap:  Emmelina monodactyla (1), Large Yellow Underwing (3), Setaceous Hebrew Character (1), Common Wainscot (2), Deep-brown Dart (1), Black Rustic (5), Brindled Green (1), Brick (2), Red-line Quaker (2), Yellow-line Quaker (1), Beaded Chestnut (16), Lunar Underwing (79), Pink-barred Sallow (7) & Sallow (6).  Lunar Underwing has now passed 1,200 individuals this season and, as usual, is doing its level best to become the garden's top species of the year.  It will be very interesting to see what the next two much warmer (if rather wet) nights bring in.

While giving our massive willow a 'hair-cut' this afternoon so that my wife and I can drive our cars beneath it rather than through it, one of the branches fell to earth with more of a thump than the others thanks to the presence of this fully-grown Poplar Hawk-moth larva:

Poplar Hawk-moth caterpillar, 4th October
Dave Wilton



  1. Thanks for the update Dave and the photo's to help jdentification of the Brick and Quakers. I just hope over the next few weeks I need them!. LYU's have out numbered anything else here and I don't really know why that should be when the Lunar seems to be by far top of other people's counts?.

  2. It is interesting how different gardens produce completely different results. I'm only about 15 miles away from you as the crow flies yet I haven't been over-burdened with Large Yellow Underwings at all this year (some would say that's a blessing!).

  3. I have reared loads of Brick moths this year from fallen sallow catkins collected in April - sallow is not usually given as a primary foodplant for this moth (I was really after the sallow-feeding Xanthia species). When among the fallen catkins, the caterpillars look like, and move like, tiny adders.


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