Saturday, 4 December 2021

Moths are still out there

Last night the garden actinic light brought in seven moths of four species:  December Moth (1), Winter Moth (3), Mottled Umber (2) & Scarce Umber (1).  All had arrived by 8pm apart from the Scarce Umber which must have turned up sometime in the early hours.

December Moth, Mottled Umber & Scarce Umber
Westcott 3rd December

It is getting a bit late for Scarce Umber now.  The one above equals the latest date I've ever had a male of the species in the garden here, although I have seen them throughout December in local woodland and I found an active female on the conservatory roof at the end of January this year. 

Dave Wilton Westcott, Bucks

Tuesday, 30 November 2021

Westcott, Bucks

The carpet of snow here started to disappear after dark as the temperature finally began to rise and I thought there might be a chance of moth activity before dawn this morning.  I was expecting the usual Winter Moth or Scarce Umber (all I've had other than blanks for nearly a week now) so it made a change to find this smart Satellite at 6.30am, looking as though it had only just turned up to the light.  There was nothing else to be seen apart from a few flies.

Satellite, Westcott 29th November

Dave Wilton Westcott, Bucks

Friday, 26 November 2021

Mine on oak leaf

 I believe this mine on oak is either Stigmella roborella, ruficapitella or atricapitella. If so, can one can get any further? I assume the larva has left and pupation has occurred, but there seems to be no visible exit hole!

Phil T

Thursday, 25 November 2021

Acleris notana??

 I know this can be variable, and not sure what else it can be. Please put me straight.

Best wishes


Mompha species

The ditches in our local area are full of willowherb (Epilobium spp) and during the winter months I often find inside our house examples of some of the Mompha species which feed on them.  Four appear here in that way, Mompha epilobiella, Mompha subbistrigella, Mompha jurassicella and Mompha bradleyi.  Of the others which hibernate as adults I've had langiella once to light but never found it indoors, while neither divisella (seemingly absent from Bucks) nor sturnipennella (very rare in the county) have been found here. 

This month I've seen epilobiella a couple of times already (easy to identify because of its overall light brown shading).  Yesterday evening I caught the moth below flying around in our kitchen and I suspect that it is jurassicella, although that one and bradleyi are quite difficult to separate especially when they're no longer fresh.  The former is far more common here than the latter (50+ records for jurassicella, an annual find indoors with many confirmed by dissection, and four for bradleyi, all confirmed by dissection with the most recent sighting in 2019).  This one will be retained to be sure which of the two it is.

Likely Mompha jurassicella, Westcott 24th November

The actinic light is still being run here nightly despite the steep drop in temperature and, so far at least, I've only had one blank night (the 22nd).  Last night produced Winter Moth (3) and Scarce Umber (1).  The only other species I've had over the past six nights have been December Moth, Red-green Carpet, Mottled Umber and Brick.

Dave Wilton Westcott, Bucks

Saturday, 20 November 2021

Pale Brindled Beauty

Assuming I have the ID correct, (I spent a while trying to turn it into a Mottled Umber before the penny droppped!), a very early Pale Brindled Beauty in the MV trap last night. 

Phil T

Black-spotted Chestnut

Robin Knill-Jones had his first Black-spotted Chestnut of the season in Denham, Bucks last night.  Surely by now someone else in south Bucks must start getting this species!  It has already made appearances at two or three sites in Bedfordshire over the past couple of weeks. 

Black-spotted Chestnut, Denham 19th November


Friday, 19 November 2021

Pseudargyrotoza conwagana and new photo

Having now got a better photo of the deformed micro from my previous post against a neutral background I think Acleris sparsana looks most likely.

Last night's rather disappointing catch did include a late Pseudargyrotoza conwagana. 

Andy Newbold, Sibford Ferris. Oxon.

Wednesday, 17 November 2021


The latest issue of E-moth from Butterfly Conservation should be available at the link here.