Monday, 23 May 2022

Swings and Roundabouts

Despite good conditions it was a pretty mundane night in the garden at Westcott last night (just under 40 species with only Straw Dot and an as yet unidentified Coleophorid as new for the year).  However, I also took a couple of MV traps to a wood in Yardley Chase in the far north of Bucks for the usual three hours and the results there couldn't have been more different.  As often happens in woodland it was a slow start, but in the end more than 120 species appeared altogether which is an excellent count for a visit anywhere in May, and some of them were around in very good numbers.  Footman moths often give high counts but I had more than 100 Orange Footmen altogether, while other species which usually only appear in ones and twos also did well, of which the most noteworthy were Poplar Hawk-moth (25) and Large Nutmeg (54).  Pale-shouldered Brocade is another once plentiful moth which I'd thought was going downhill locally because I saw none anywhere in 2019, one in 2020 and none in 2021, but seven of them turned up last night in both its grey and brown forms.  Devon Carpet also visited one of the traps so it looks as though the woods in the north of the county might be turning into a bit of a stronghold for it.  There were plenty of micros too (about 40 species altogether) and they included some nice ones such as Cochylis nana, Eulia ministrana, Eucosmomorpha albersana, Ancylis diminutana, Ancylis laetana, Epinotia demarniana & Anania lancealis.  There was no sign of Striped Hawk-moth but I did get a migrant Dark Sword-grass and several examples of Plutella xylostella

Eulia ministrana, Yardley Chase 22nd May

Eucosmomorpha albersana, Yardley Chase 22nd May

Ancylis laetana, Yardley Chase 22nd May

Pale-shouldered Brocade, Yardley Chase 22nd May

Dave Wilton Westcott, Bucks     

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