Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Phyllocnistis saligna

Despite over an hour of rain just after dark, more than 100 species were trapped here in the garden at Westcott last night but the only new item was Phyllocnistis saligna, unless Peter Hall's microscope can turn a fairly large pug or a small gelechiid into something interesting (both are quite worn specimens).  Numbers wise, Agriphila straminella and Pleuroptya ruralis/Mother of Pearl are currently out-performing everything else, with totals of 70 and 48 respectively last night.  Common Rustic agg. managed 22 individuals but no other macros got past 20.  It is good to see Dusky Thorn doing quite well yet again with 16 recorded to date in the garden, already more July records than I've ever had before.  Theoretically at least, it should keep going until late-September.

Phyllocnistis saligna, Westcott 25th July

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks        

Gypsy moth in Maidenhead

I was surprised to have a Gypsy moth in my Maidenhead garden trap this morning (Wednesday).  The best of the 30 macro species of which only one reached double figures - Brimstone with 13 (only 2 inside the trap).  Tree Lichen Beauty did well for the garden with 6.

Wood carpet ?

I had this moth last night in my garden trap at Beenham, Berks. Is this a Wood Carpet? It was larger than a Common carpet. Not one that I've had before.

Thanks Derek

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Slow but steady (plus one from elsewhere)

Nothing spectacular of late from our garden in Wolvercote, Oxfordshire, but a continuation of reasonable catches since our return from holiday last week. A few species which are always worth seeing:

Black Arches, 23/7/17

Brown-line Bright-eye, 23/7/17

Small Phoenix, 23/7/17
Also a few uncertainties, some from before we went away: I'm pretty sure this is a Double Lobed, although I'm aware of having had trouble with this before:

Presumed Double Lobed, 13/7/17
This looks like a Eucosma species, but perhaps not the usual cana:

Possible Eucosma sp., 23/7/17
And I think the following are probably Epiblema foenella, Morophaga choragella and possibly Stenoptilia pterodactyla (it could just be a slightly beaten-up Emmelina monodactyla), but would welcome confirmation or other suggestions.

Probable Epiblema foenella, 8/7/17

Probable Morophaga choragella, 8/7/17

Possible Stenoptilia pterodactyla, 8/7/17
I mentioned being on holiday last week: we were on the Greek island of Corfu, and just before going, I acquired a light, portable trap, which I tried running overnight while we were there. The results were OK, but not spectacular - I think there was a lot of light pollution in the resort we were in - and I haven't yet had time to process the various photos I took, but the specimen below was perhaps the most memorable: a Striped Hawkmoth. I think I'll be waiting a long time before one of those turns up in my garden trap here...

(NOT from Oxfordshire!) Striped Hawkmoth, Kassiopi, Corfu, 20/7/17
Steve Goddard

Monday, 24 July 2017

Westcott, Bucks

On 19th July I had another small collection of new arrivals for the garden year-list, comprising Athrips mouffetella, Endothenia gentianaeana, Pammene aurita, Oncocera semirubella, Latticed Heath and Gold Spot, but then nothing further new until last night when Yponomeuta sedella, Elachista maculicerusella & Barred Rivulet appeared.

Oncocera semirubella, Westcott 19th July

Gold Spot, Westcott 19th July

Yponomeuta sedella, Westcott 23rd July

Barred Rivulet, Westcott 23rd July

Oncocera semirubella is a very smart micro and appeared here for the first time last August when it was considered to be a wanderer from the Chilterns.  With this second visitor it would be nice to think that it has now become established somewhere closer to home.  Its larvae feed on bird's-foot trefoil and other vetches and there's no shortage of them around here.  The completely grey Yponomeuta sedella was last seen in the garden in 2013 and seems quite uncommon in the county as a whole (there are fewer than 20 records for VC24).  It certainly made a change from the ubiquitous evonymella which I get here in some numbers.  Of the other Ermines, plumbella hasn't visited the garden trap since 2011 while the remainder (which in any case can't be safely separated without knowing the food-plant) generally only put in three or four appearances annually.  Barred Rivulet is an occasional visitor to Westcott but this is another moth last recorded here in 2013.

Migrants so far this month have been limited to Dark Sword-grass (1st, 15th & 18th) and Small Mottled Willow (10th, 17th & 19th), along with more regular visits from Plutella xylostella, Udea ferrugalis and Nomophila noctuella.  Silver Y has been seen but not regularly nor in any significant numbers, while during the daytime Hummingbird Hawk-moth is currently appearing every day on the buddleias and on several occasions there have been two at once.

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks


Sunday, 23 July 2017

Drop in numbers but migrants still around

Only 22 species last night in Longwick as the wind / rain suppressed moth numbers - especially micros. However this Dark Sword-grass and 2 Silver Y kept the migrant tally ticking away!

Raspberry fool

We migrated to Bucks this afternoon and popped into the Home Cottage Farm PYO near Iver. It was fortuitous that I had left my pheromone lures in the car. I put the HYL lure out while the wife picked Raspberries and within a few minutes I had a number of Raspberry Clearwings (what else) kicking around. I tried for Currant around a few old blackcurrant bushes and for Red-tipped in the orchard but no joy. Still 1 out of 3 ain't bad.  The owners were very interested and hadn't realised the moth was present and guessed it might be why they are losing a lot of plants.

Robert Payne (Harrow)

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Alder Moth

Having had an Alder Moth in May this year, the first seen here in 12 years of trapping, I was surprised to find what I'm sure must be an Alder Moth in the trap this morning.  Surely this is a very late appearance for a moth which is supposed to have just one generation, or could it be a freak second brood?

Also this rather nicely marked fly  -  apologies for the poor photo.  It is about 4.5mm FW.  I would be interested to know if anyone can tell me what it is:

And I also had a Cydalima Perspectalis, first here for this year.

Richard Ellis

Friday, 21 July 2017


Trying to sort these out - from the past week or so.

Buff Footman
 Buff Footman

 Dingy var stramineola
 Typical Dingy

Scarce? - I noticed this one was greyer so I wondered if it might be Hoary, unfortunately after seeing the hindwings I was really no wiser and after looking again at the books I settled on Scarce.

mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford.

Catch up IDs

from the past week, here are some (hopefully) for confirmation.

Elachista argentella

Knot Grass (a different from the previous one. This one got a bit agitated and although it's incredibly blurry and in a pot that I should have retired you can see the hindwings are brown with a black border)

 Blastobasis adustella (this one looked a bit different)

 Phycita roborella

Mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford

Few Longwick queries

The wind appeared to have had some impact as numbers seemed a little down. A fresh Ypsolopha Dentella is always an attractive sight but apart from two Silver Y not too much else of note.

I have a few queries. The first is a minor species which is noticeably rufous and about 10mm long. The second is I assume just a Riband Wave but a seemingly small and somewhat non-kinked variety? And the third is another one of those pesky Pyrales - is it a washed out Udea Lutealis? F/L 12mm.

Comments welcome as always. Like Dave, Longwick doesn't seem urban enough for the likes of Toadflax Brocade - although with several proposed house building developments surrounding my house I sadly may get it soon.

Sitochroa palealis?

Can't think what else it might be.

Mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford

Micros from Wednesday

I think I have finally managed to reduce my questions about micros from Wednesday night's catch to these 3.

1, The brown Tortrix was about 5.5mm in length.
2. About 4mm in length excluding antennae..
3. This one must have escaped between me taking this photo and going through the moths I had put in jars for further investigation!

Andy Newbold, Sibford Ferris, Oxon.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Toadflax Brocade

Lots of highlights over the last fortnight in East Oxford (have added 42 species to garden list since late May) including this smart Toadflax Brocade on night of 19 July; I assume this species is rather more frequent than latest field guides suggest.

Toadflax Brocade, East Oxford, 19 July 2017

Other new for garden species included Marbled Green (16 July, a night with at least 300 Water Veneers in trap and many hundreds more on grass around it), Slender Brindle (2 July), Buff Footman (3 July) and, while not new, this migrant Dark Sword Grass was only 2nd record for me.

 Marbled Green (rescued from drowning) East Oxford 16 July 2017

Slender Brindle, East Oxford, 2 July 2017

Buff Footman and Dark Sword Grass, East Oxford, 3 July 2017

Confirmations please

hi, I think I have

Aethes smeathmanniana

White-spotted pug

 Phycitodes binaevella

Cloaked Minor

Small Rivulet

can someone confirm please?

Mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford