Thursday, 15 June 2017

Rammamere Heath

Last night I made another trip to Greensand Trust territory in the Brickhills, running some lights on Rammamere Heath which lies right on the Bucks/Beds border.  It was certainly a busy night for moths with the macros alone accounting for more than 100 species.  Brown Silver-line and True Lover's Knot were around in considerable numbers (140+ of the latter), while a double-digit count for Grey Arches seemed to me to be noteworthy as I usually see them only as singletons.  Rosy Marbled was the one target in mind for this session and, thankfully, a single albeit rather worn example duly turned up:

Rosy Marbled, Rammamere Heath 14th June

When fresh this diminutive species has a pink tinge to the lightest areas, hence its name, but this soon disappears.  One of our smallest macro-moths and nationally scarce, in Bucks it was known only from the south of the county (places such as Langley Park, Burnham Beeches and Turville Heath) until discovered at Rammamere when I last trapped regularly there back in 2011.  Other new-for-year macros seen last night included Drinker, Dwarf Cream Wave, Phoenix, Scallop Shell, Sandy Carpet, Barred Red, Privet Hawk-moth, Four-dotted Footman, Purple Clay & Bird's Wing:

Bird's Wing, Rammamere Heath 14th June

Bird's Wing is not uncommon, especially in south Bucks (and notably in Richard Ellis' garden) but I've only recorded it at Stoke Common and most of the time it seems to delight in avoiding me.  To see a pair at Rammamere was therefore very pleasing indeed!

The micro list from last night is still a work in progress but there don't seem to be too many particularly noteworthy species other than Elegia similella (below) which I don't see very often at all:

Elegia similella, Rammamere Heath 14th June
Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks 

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