Moths: June 2015
Warm overnight weather on the 27th began to bring a change in fortunes, with 12 new macro species for the year, including the local speciality Bright Wave, a smart Barred Yellow, Clay, Pigmy Footman, Scorched Wing, Maple Prominent, Spruce Carpet, Engrailed and Barred Straw. The 28th produced Orange Footman, Grey Pine Carpet and Brown-tail for the first time and despite an overnight low of just 7 degrees Short-cloaked Moth was recorded on the 29th.
At the end of the month, the total of macro species recorded during the year had reached 192. Whilst this was way behind the best years it is comparable to 2012 and 2013; both years that were similarly cool and unhelpful in spring and early summer.
Sallow Kitten and White-line Dart were recorded overnight on the 26th and Rest Harrow was on the wing along the beach on the 27th.
Cabbage and the less than annual Yarrow Pug were recorded last night, though numbers remain muted.
After several cold and unproductive nights, last night’s session captured over 250 moths, amongst which were the first Small Dusty Wave and Oak-tree Pug of the year.
Last night was humdrum by comparison with Friday, but Pine Hawk-moth was recorded for the first time.
Prior to the first of this year’s Moth Nights at the Field Centre, Buff Arches, White Colon and Uncertain were recorded at HQ for the first time, but setting a light trap in the Whitehouse proved particularly productive, resulting in the addition of 19 more macro species for the year. Best of them were Goat Moth and Sand Dart, both unrecorded last year, Riband Wave, Slender and Shaded Pugs, Mottled Beauty, Shears, Campion, Green Silver-lines and Blackneck. Some interesting micros included the first record for the Observatory of Syncopacma larseniella and only the second record of the very local Nascia cilialis.
Although last night was more subdued, Puss Moth, Privet Hawk-moth and Pinion-streaked Snout were recorded for the first time this year.
Last night was warm with some rain and was comfortably the best night of the year so far, with 11 new macros including Willow Beauty, only the Bay’s fourth Beautiful Hook-tip, a lovely Peach Blossom and Lesser Swallow Prominent. There were also 3 Bordered Straws among a couple of handfuls of migrants.
Last night was another that will not occasion an emergency meeting of the records committee. Still, lest we are accused of being unnecessarily curmudgeonly, Light Arches and Common Footman were new for the year and another Small Mottled Willow was captured.
Common Pug was added last night, which was rather too cold to be very productive, and the catchily-titled Narrow-bordered 5-spot Burnet was found emerging in the Whitehouse this morning.
Last night was also productive, adding a further nine new macros for the year, including Dog’s Tooth, Coronet, Purple Bar, Single-dotted Wave, Purple Bar, Dotted Fan-foot and Cypress Carpet.
Yesterday not only brought migrant Bee-eaters ahead of thunderstorms approaching from the continent but it was also the most significant night of the year for migrant moths, including 2 Red-necked Footman, a Bordered Straw, a Small Mottled Willow, several Diamond-backs and 2 Rush Veneers, along with Dusky Brocade and Green and White-spotted Pugs.
Grey/Dark Daggerwas recorded yesterday afternoon and Dark Arches, Southern Wainscot, Snout and Middle-barred Minor in the overnight session.
A bit warmer overnight and thus a bit more productive, with the first Ghost Moth of the season of note, though the total of 25 moths was pretty pathetic for early June.
The last couple of nights have slowed down a bit, with five new macro species on the 6th including Bordered Sallow, Bird’s Wing, Mottled Rustic, May Highflyer and Mottled Pug. Large Yellow Underwing was recorded last night.
Last night brought a distinct improvement, with 141 moths including migrants in the shape of Bordered Straw, a few Diamond-backs and Silver-y, while ten new macros for the year included Cream-spot Tiger, Elephant Hawk-moth and Pebble Hook-tip.
88 moths were recorded last night, which was relatively warm for a change. New macros for the year included Sharp-angled Peacock, Peppered Moth, Yellow-barred Brindle, an occasional species that appears to be increasing locally, Tawny Marbled Minor, Flame and Gold Spot.
Although last night produced just 20 moths, warm sunshine this morning encouraged the appearance of the first Yellow Shell and Straw Dot of the year.
Yesterday’s awful weather relented in time to allow an overnight trapping session that produced Light Emerald, Burnished Brass, Lime-speck Pug, Buff Ermine and Common Marbled Carpet for the first time this year and despite the trauma inflicted by an increasingly warm and sunny morning a Pale Tussock was found on the seed shed this morning. Dare it be said, the outlook for the next couple of nights is promising, with a southerly airflow ………
The final night of trapping in May this year produced just 15 moths, though one was the first Common Swift of the year, bringing the total of macro species recorded thus far to 74, compared to 177 at the same time last year. It is true to say that coverage has been less than provided by Badger, but the average overnight low temperature of 6.5 degrees C has a good deal more to do with it. However, ahead of some vile weather forecast for tonight and tomorrow a Brown Silver-line was disturbed from bracken on the Estate this morning.