Monday, 23 May 2016

The Jimi Hendrix moth...

Foxy Lady!  A three-hour session with two MV traps in the M40 Compensation Area at Bernwood Forest, Bucks last night produced just 25 species but amongst them was this rather tired and battered gem: 

Fox Moth female, Bernwood Forest 22nd May

Until last night Fox Moth had always been top of my local "wish list".  It is nowhere near as common in our region as the field guides seem to suggest and there are only three previous post-millennium sightings of the adult in vc24 (all females to light traps).  In fact it seems to have been lost altogether from the counties immediately to the east of Bucks, although I imagine that it may still be found a little more frequently to the west, in Berks and Oxon.  In the not too distant past I certainly remember a larval find at Greenham Common and some probable sightings of day-flying males near Lambourn. 

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks      


  1. I trapped a female in Oakley woods last year, so she may have been the offspring of that one.

  2. oh dear, another "common moth" of my youth on the wane. I last saw one at Devil's Punchbowl near Wantage when I was looking for (and finding) Wood Tigers. Supposed to be that other common moth of my youth, the the garden Tiger up there too.

  3. Looking at Ansorge (The Macrolepidoptera of Buckinghamshire, 1969), he quotes the Victoria County History as saying "seldom seen" and his own assessment was that it was not at all common in the county, so it doesn't look as though - in Bucks at least - it is much worse off now than it has ever been. Stoke Common and Black Park (both heathland sites) have records but there had been no prior sightings in the Bernwood area until DM's female last year. It beats me how moths which exist at such low levels as this (Oak Eggar is another) ever manage to meet up!

    1. We trapped a Fox moth in 2012 at Thatcham reed bed. Which is a moths flight from Greenham common.


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