Sunday, 27 January 2019

Newport Pagnell Garden Stats

My suburban garden measures 5.3m x 9.6m and is surrounded by houses.  My moth trap is squeezed in a corner and is pretty well boxed in on three sides as neighbours were not happy about their bedrooms being lit up at night. It’s location is most certainly not the ideal.   2018 was the 24th year that I have recorded moths at SP859437 and over that time I have always used a 125W mercury vapour bulb over a variety of receptacles.  My first trap was made using a home brew beer- barrel, my second used one of those dalek type vax machines as the container.  From 1998 to 2016 the bulb sat upon a Skinner trap and for the past 2 years upon a Robinson trap.

2018 yielded 11,676 specimens (some 2,000 more than 2017) from 225 trapping nights between February and November and was the second highest annual total ever (The highest was in 1996 when 16,259 were counted from just 166 trapping nights).  The total number of species recorded was 330, the highest ever, and these comprised 104 micros and 226 macros.  There were 26 new moths , 16 micros and 10 macros, added to the garden list which now stands at around 550.  The pick of the new ones were Clifden Nonpareil, my early Christmas present in September, Humming Bird Hawk-moth, often seen locally but not in my garden and Toadflax Brocade, another that had missed the garden for too long.

My macro-moth  “Top of the Pops”  2018 were Vine’s Rustic, 1115, Heart and Dart, 1038, Large Yellow Underwing, 874, Setaceous Hebrew Character, 767, Shuttle-shaped Dart, 396 and micro-moths were headed by Yponomeuta evonymella, 383.   I do not always keep an eye on “ Top of the Pops” and it rather surprised me that Vine’s Rustic headed the field.

In summary then 2018 must go down as a very good year in terms of numbers.  

1 comment:

  1. Considering the size of the garden and constraints over where you can place the trap, Gordon, those are really good figures and show that it is worth persevering in almost any situation.

    Vine's Rustic seems to have had a good year everywhere. In my garden it only came 17th in the pecking order but that was still 639 individuals which is WAY more than I usually get (the previous highest count was 131 in 2005). Yponomeuta evonymella had a fantastic year here too and was 11th on my 2018 list with 856 individuals, which certainly eclipses 2017's count of 190.


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