Moths: July 2020
It was clear and cool last night, the temperature fell below 10 for the first time for a while, dropping to 9.8°C. The catch dropped acordingly to 138 moths of 47 species. Bright Waves seem to be trickling on with another single last night. There were also two more Aethes margaritanas.
The wind returned on Wednesday night and there was nothing new to report however it clouded over last night enough to give a light shower and keep the temperature up. The catch increased to 455 moths of 70 species. Dusky Brocade, Latticed Heath, Mouse Moth, Dusky Sallow, Box Tree Moth, Ypsolopha scabrella and Caloptilia rufipennella were all new for the year. Langmaid’s Yellow Underwing continued its excellent run leading Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing 16 to 11.
The best mothing was reserved for a targeted visit to the south end of the Estate by our warden. This yielded our second record of Maple Pug (the first was in 2002) beside the Field Maple. Even better was the first record ever of Acleris umbrana. There was also one of the pine specialists which rarely make it to the main site namely Rhyacionia pinicolana and the Elm specialist Rhodophaea formosa. Dingy Footman and Wormwood Pug were new for the year and the next generation of Early Thorn appeared.
The wind dropped further and the cloud rolled in bringing on and off light rain and drizzle. The temperature did not drop below 14.6°C and the catch shot up to 562 moths of 101 species. Garden Tiger was new this year. Other notable records were singles of Matthew’s Wainscot and Blackneck plus restricted micros such as Aphomia zelleri and Aethes margaritana. Langmaid’s Yellow Underwing continues to have an excellent year with 15 recorded, all separated individually from the nine Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwings (not because they fight but because they look very similar).
The wind dropped enough for the catch to increase to 238 moths of 58 species. Once again there were no new species for the year but there was clearly an emergence of Common Footman with 31 counted. There were singles of Acrobasis repandana and Sciota adelphella.
No drop in the wind and even the local species are beginning to dwindle. Last night yielded only 125 moths of 39 species. The forecast is for the wind to lessen and there are even rumours of a bit of rain which will be welcome by all the wildlife.
The wind continues to dominate but it was a bit more humid so there were a few more grass moths. There were 163 moths of 37 species. This included five Langmaid’s Yellow Underwings, three Silver Y’s, a Dark Sword-grass and a Diamondback.
A Hummingbird Hawk-moth was nectaring along Guilford Road.
Considering the strength of the wind a catch of 109 moths of 24 species was not bad. No new species for the year or migrants stuck their heads above the parapet. Langmaid’s Yellow Underwing kept up their good run with three more. The pattern on Archer’s Dart always draws admiring looks. More wind tonight so prospects are not good.
The wind returned and the catch dropped to 223 moths of 65 species. Scallop Shell and Ethmia bipunctella were nice to see.
Another good night with 415 moths of 81 species. The interest was again provided by local species and Sallow Kitten, Dunbar, and Pine Carpet were all new this year. There were six more Langmaid’s Yellow Underwings, a Silver-barred, and an Evergestis limbata. The only migrants were two Silver Y’s, two Diamondbacks and a Dark Sword-grass.
Although it drizzled on and off most of yesterday the droplets only occasionally joined up to make rain. The cloud persisted overnight and the wind dropped a bit and the temperature did not fall below 15.8°C. This resulted in a better catch of 389 moths of 77 species, not surprisingly considering the wind there were relatively few micros. New for the year were Sycamore, Scarce Footman, and Least Yellow Underwing. Seven Silver Ys, four Dark Sword-grasses and three Diamondbacks were the only hints of migration. There was clearly an emergence of Langmaid’s Yellow Underwing with eight being recorded. Two Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwings meant each of these ten had to be checked carefully.