Friday, 31 March 2017

Away trapping

Another visit to Finemere Wood, Bucks on Wednesday night produced a reasonable haul of just over 200 moths in each of the two MV traps, their combined species count reaching 25.  New sightings for me this year included Dyseriocrania subpurpurella, Semioscopis steinkellneriana, Frosted Green and Streamer, but pride of place goes to what appears to be Acleris logiana, supposedly a species that is spreading but at the moment still very uncommon in the county with only about a dozen records since the first in 2009.  This one will be given a close check to confirm.  The larval stage feeds on birch (there's plenty of that at Finemere) whereas the confusion species Acleris kochiella is an elm feeder of which there is only a little around the edge of the wood.  I get kochiella regularly at home (three times already this year) where we have plenty of elm in the garden.

Acleris logiana, Finemere 29th March

Frosted Green, Finemere 29th March

Last night I was tempted out onto National Trust chalk grassland near Ivinghoe Beacon, Bucks, overlooking Beds and Herts.  It is never the most productive habitat at this time of year and despite cloud cover and reasonable temperatures the terrain meant that it was almost impossible to get away from that moderate southerly breeze.  The two MV traps did eventually bring in 17 species but it was very slow going and Common Quaker (57) was the only moth to appear in any numbers.  Early examples of Scorched Carpet and Nut-tree Tussock were perhaps of interest, but just about the only reason for going there in the first place was to see my final Orthosia of the year and Northern Drab duly put in an appearance at each trap.  It is always a good trip when the target turns up! 

Northern Drab, Ivinghoe 30th March

Northern Drab, Ivinghoe 30th March

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

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