Sunday, 26 June 2011

A peppering of moths

Temperature minimum last night was 14.7C so I put the trap out. 118 moths of 32 species, the commonest being Heart & Dart (37), Garden Grass Veneer (26) and much more surprisingly, Peppered moth, with 10 being present. Five new ones for the year, a Skin Moth, the grass moth Agriphila straminella, Grey Dagger, an early Six-striped Rustic and two Pale Mottled Willow.

Six-striped Rustic - another early this year

I say Grey Dagger, but cannot rule out Dark Dagger. This moth cannot be readily distinguished as an adult from Grey Dagger except by examination of the genitalia, although in the caterpillar stage this is not a problem as the species are quite different.  Considering how rare Dark Dagger is in the county  (about half a dozen county records - all confirmed?), compared with Grey Dagger which is common, and certainly all that have been checked in the garden have been Grey. I have also found several larvae on the fell, again all Grey as opposed to zero Dark.

Probable Grey Dagger
As well as the moths caught overnight,  there a Common Green Lacewing and a Heather Fly (Bibio pomonae) in the trap this morning.

Heather Fly, the moorland cousin of the St. Mark's Fly
The warmest day of the year, with my little weather station showing a record maximum temperature (I got it at Christmas) of 28.7C at 13:50 hrs today Scorchio!

Common Whitethroat and Garden Warbler were both singing today and an Oyster-catcher flew over Chester Moor. More unusual was a small party of Goldfinch that contained an adult Siskin. Not sure where the Siskin came from as I haven't seen one since early March.

Common Whitethroat - still singing
Bulbous Buttercup, Meadow Cranesbill and Wild Carrot were added to the Flora List.

Meadow Cranesbill - some nice plants along the
Chester Moor end of Waldridge Lane
Butterflies were out in force with good numbers particularly of Ringlet, Meadow Brown, Small Heath and Small Skipper plus a few very fresh looking Small Tortoiseshell.

My first Strawberry of the year, though these wild ones aren't exactly filling

OFFH List this year

Flowering plants - 275
Birds - 104
Moths - 148
Butterflies - 17
Dragonflies - 4
Hoverflies - 9
Mammals - 10

1 comment:

  1. You`re well ahead of me with the moths now, Keith. Just about to see if can reduce that lead by netting in the garden for an hour tonight.