Saturday, 7 May 2011

What a superb mothing night

A muggy night with a minimum temperature of 13C and quite a few moths hovering around the trap within minutes of it getting switched on last night. Quite exciting this morning to see so many moths when I checked it at dawn.
In it were my first ever White-pinion Spotted, and two of them to boot,  my first garden micromoth (and I mean micro) Micropterix calthella, a Cinnabar & 2 Alder Moth. My earliest ever Small Square-spot, Poplar Grey and several of the 9 species of Pug caught overnight. Throw in a Pale Tussock and a superb night of 68 moths of 32 species with another micro still to identify. The full list was [* were new for the year here at Waldridge]
Micropterix calthella 1 *
Parsnip Moth (Depressaria heraclei) 1
Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata) 2 *
Common Marbled Carpet (Chloroclysta truncata) 1 *
Spruce Carpet (Thera britannica) 2 *
May Highflyer (Hydriomena impluviata) 1 *
Foxglove Pug (Eupithecia pulchellata) 1 *
Mottled Pug (Eupithecia exiguata) 4 *
Common Pug (Eupithecia vulgata) 1
Grey Pug (Eupithecia subfuscata) 5 *
Brindled Pug (Eupithecia abbreviata) 2
Oak-tree Pug (Eupithecia dodoneata) 2
Dwarf Pug (Eupithecia tantillaria) 5 *
V-Pug (Chloroclystis v-ata) 1 *
Double-striped Pug (Gymnoscelis rufifasciata) 2
Brown Silver-line (Petrophora chlorosata) 1 *
Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata) 2 *
Purple Thorn (Selenia tetralunaria) 1 *
White-pinion Spotted (Lomographa bimaculata) 2 *

 White-pinion Spotted  - A new species of moth for me

Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata) 6 *
Iron Prominent (Notodonta dromedarius) 2
Lesser Swallow Prominent (Pheosia gnoma) 1 *
Pale Tussock (Calliteara pudibunda) 1 *

Pale Tussock - My 3rd for the  garden

Pale Tussock - Head on - Now thats cute, surely
Cinnabar (Tyria jacobaeae) 1 *

Cinnabar - New for the garden

Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta) 7
Small Square-spot (Diarsia rubi) 1 *
Pine Beauty (Panolis flammea) 1
Clouded Drab (Orthosia incerta) 2
Hebrew Character (Orthosia gothica) 2
Poplar Grey (Acronicta megacephala) 1 *

Poplar Grey - a ragged specimen but my earliest ever

Alder Moth (Acronicta alni) 2 *

Alder Moth - 1 of 4 species new for the garden last night

Clouded-bordered Brindle (Apamea crenata) 1 *
Clouded-bordered Brindle [melanic form] (Apamea crenata ab. combusta) 3

Clouded-bordered Brindle - the normal form which is rarer here

and 1 Cockchafer and a 2-spotted Ladybird

22 new species of moth for the year brings the list to a much more respectable 61 species. I'm a very happy chappie.

  The Cockchafer was boxed up with the rest of the moths to be released away from the garden as I usually do. This is as much as to protect them from the birds in the garden as I usually don't trap on consecutive nights to give any I don't trap a chance to feed as to stop duplicate catches. Anyhow when I was a tidied up the male Blackbird hopped right up to the patio window, dropped a second Cockchafer, and looked in, cocking it's head to one side as if to say 'What do I do with this?'. Maybe it thought it was Swap-shop and was ready to swap for a more juicy palatable moth?

Haven't had time to wander out yet but a Sedge Warbler singing from the hedge nearby is certainly new in, and the House Martins have returned in numbers now, though still very few Swifts. A Green Woodpecker yaffled from the Hermitage woods again.


  1. Lovely Alder Moth, yet to see this species, so well done. Indeed it was pretty much perfect conditions, but a little breezy in our location towards the middle of the night.

  2. Great catch there, Keith. Perfect conditions for it though.

  3. Cheers gents, best catch in a long time and like you both say the conditions were spot on here.

  4. What a night Keith...some superb moths there.