Saturday, 30 April 2011

Only one moth but here's nothing to panic about

Spent an hour on the fell after emptying the moth trap this morning whose contents consisted of a single moth, a Shuttle-shaped Dart. The minimum temperature last night was 7.3C but seemed colder. The numbers always drop off round about now and the same day in previous years only produced.
2010 - 8 moths of 6 species
2009 - 4 moths of 4 species
2008 - 1 moth  of 1 species
2007 - 3 moths of 3 species
2006 - 2 moths of 2 species
2005 - 3 moths of 2 species

So there's nothing to panic about.

Anyway, back to the fell and despite the wind which was keeping most things down I did manage to bag a few things. There is a lot more Willow Warbler singing today, which would make me think obviously there has been an increase in numbers but I found two individuals nest building so I wonder if they are just singing more now they have paired up? Single Grasshopper Warbler singing behind the village still and a Lesser Whitethroat there at last. I got another year tick earlier in the day when 3 Swift were over the railway station in town when I passed there earlier on a message together with half a dozen House Martin. There were two more Swift were over the fell as I wandered later.

Common Swift -  the first of the year 
Quite a few butterflies were on the wing but they were keeping low and usually I only saw them when I flushed them. The short grass on the top of the old tip was very productive and had my first Dingy Skipper of the year plus the usual common species.

Dingy Skipper

The adjacent fell gave me another one with Wall Brown 

Wall Brown 
and a had some brief views of a Green Hairstreak. This one was right by the road at Waldridge Lane not where I've had them before. I hung around a while but never saw it again.  Green Tiger Beetles were out in force on the paths, 10+ Common Heath moths  and the commonest Bumblebee out at the moment is the Common Carder.

Green Tiger Beetle
Notched up a few more common plants in flower to boost the list with Rowan, Red Horse-ChestnutMeadow Buttercup, Black Medick, Three-nerved Sandwort and Bird's-foot Trefoil.

Three-nerved Sandwort in the South Burn Woods

To update the lists they now stand at
Birds - 97
Butterflies -12
Hoverflies - 8
Flowers - 145

1 comment:

  1. Great set of pics, Keith. Very envious of the Wall Brown, has i`ve only seen 2 singles in the last 3 years.