Thursday, 8 November 2018

Plumed Prominent

One good thing about this time of year is that you can drive to the other end of the county, get three or four hours of "away trapping" in and still be home for News at Ten!  That's what happened this evening when I went in search of Plumed Prominent in woodland at Medmenham, Bucks as I thought this rather scarce species might just have started flying by now.  Only one was seen, a male which arrived on the sheet next to one of my three MV lights at 7.10pm:

Plumed Prominent, Medmenham 8th November

Plumed Prominent, Medmenham 8th November

The traps were quite busy with November and December Moths, while other species seen included Plutella xylostella, Blastobasis lacticolella, Acleris sparsana, Red-green Carpet, Spruce Carpet, Winter Moth, Mottled Umber, Chestnut, Dark Chestnut, Brick & Yellow-line Quaker.

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks


  1. Hi Dave, can I ask what sort of material your white sheet is that you use next to your traps? I need to get myself something similar.

  2. Hi Steve, from memory it was just a standard King-sized cotton sheet (from Tesco I think - other suppliers are available!). Unfortunately the information on the label has been bleached off. Plumed Prominent isn't a big moth and the photos make the weave look more coarse than it really is.

    1. Ah, it is just a cotton sheet. I thought from the picture that you might be using something more sophisticated like white sacking or similar. Thanks Dave.

  3. White sheets do have their uses in that they probably reflect some of the UV light as well as making it easier to spot moths which don't enter the trap but land close to it, especially when trapping away from home, but I find you still have to check quite carefully for moths beyond it. In the garden here, where the trap is usually run on a mown lawn, some moths tend to avoid settling on the sheet and head for darker areas, perhaps as part of their defence against the local Brown Long-eared Bats (of which we have quite a few). This is especially so in September/October when at dawn I can often pick up 60+ Lunar Underwings from the lawn around the edge of the sheet yet none have actually landed on it, rather defeating the object of having the sheet there in the first place! Sheets can also be death traps for disorientated moths in rain or heavy dew when their wings become glued to it.


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