Thursday, 24 March 2011

More of the same

A bit cooler overnight it with the temperature dropping to 6.8C. By 00:30 hrs it had rising a couple of degrees and I had a quick look at the moth trap before I went to bed. There was obviously a lot of moths on the wing as they were flying around all over. It always gives me a buzz, when they are buzzing about as it means there is a chance of a goodie in the trap when I check it. The Tawny Owls were calling as is usual again but more unusually, a Robin was also singing despite it being nighttime.

It took a little while to plough through the moths as I eventually counted 166 of 11 species. Nothing exceptional in the way of species, nearly all of them being what I have already been catching the past two weeks.

The moths in the trap consisted of

 1 Tortricodes alternella 
 2 Early Tooth-striped (Trichopteryx carpinata)
 6 Oak Beauty (Biston strataria)
 6 Small Quaker (Orthosia cruda)
92 Common Quaker (Orthosia cerasi)
17 Clouded Drab (Orthosia incerta)
10 Twin-spotted Quaker (Orthosia munda)
24 Hebrew Character (Orthosia gothica)
 6 Early Grey (Xylocampa areola)
 1 The Chestnut (Conistra vaccinii)
 1 Oak Nycteoline (Nycteola revayana)

One of the Oak Beauties had being going at first as it was melanistic, the first time I've had one.

'Normal' Oak Beauty
'Melanistic' Oak Beauty

The Oak Nycteoline not only being my first this year was a well marked individual, grey-brown with bold black spots and a pure white head and shoulders bordered with black. Very nice as they are usally much more drab than this but they do vary tremendously. Disappointingly, it flew off before I got any decent picture.

Oak Nycteoline

The only micro moth was another Tortricodes alternella, that's the species that caused me bother earlier this month.

The Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming yet again at first light.


  1. That`s a belter of a Oak Nycteoline, Keith. A species that i`ve never encountered.

  2. It is a good'un isn't? I catch a few every year but they are very variable even the ones I catch tend to vary a good bit. This is the best looker I've ever had, usually they are on the duller side of boring.