Friday 29th

Catches seem to be stuttering with not much new to report on. Still good numbers of residents though. A Bordered Straw was the first for a few weeks and there were singles of Rest Harrow, Small Scallop, and Large Emerald in the Whitehouse area.

Thursday 28th

Dewick's Plusia and Sussex Emerald were trapped overnight around the Haven whilst triple-figures of Six-spot Burnet moths were along Prince's Beach at lunchtime. A few actinics in Middle Field produced Dot Moth and Golden Twin-spot new for the year.

Six-spot Burnet Moths by H.Willis

Monday 25th

A very busy trap but not too much out of the ordinary. There were 117 Common Rustic aggs., 65 Dark Arches, 47 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwings, and 82 White-line Darts, for example. Southern Wainscot is also becoming more numerous (ten). Square-spot Rustic was new for the year.

Sunday 24th

Another Orache in the trap at the Observatory, plus a Wormwood and our first Dark Spinach of the year.

In the Haven area there was Copper Underwing, Brown-line Bright-eye, and Brown-veined Wainscot new for the year. The highlight was a Small Ranunculus, an overdue first for Sandwich Bay. There was also another Slender Brindle (four this year after no previous records), a late Bright Wave, six Jersey Tigers, and only our second record of Cydia fagiglandana.

Saturday 23rd

Dusky Hook-tip and Twin-spotted Wainscot were new for the year. There was good variety and quality with Goat Moth, Large Emerald, two Tawny Shears, Evergestis extimalis, Pearly Underwing, and good numbers of Reed Dagger. A fresh Chocolate-tip and Latticed Heath were indicative of new broods.

Thank you to everyone who came to moth night. The next date is August 20th.

Thursday 21st

After a night's break, two traps were set last night. An Mv trap in the Whitehouse area contained around 130 species. The only migrants of note were Four-spotted Footman and Sitochroa palealis. There were lots of Drinker moths (13), Smoky Wainscots (83), and Agapeta zoegana (31), plus Tawny Shears, Campion, and Goat Moth were good to see again. New for the year were Dusky Thorn and Small Wainscot.

The carpark trap once again turned up trumps with a superb Orache. This is only our fourth ever record and the first since 2015. A Sussex Emerald was also rare, but recent records here and nearby suggest this species is now breeding in the area. Surprisingly, these were not the rarest moth of the day, but instead this crown went to a Little Emerald with one previous record in 2012. Dewick's Plusia, Jersey Tiger, Tree-lichen Beauty, Webb's Wainscot, Flounced Rustic, and Mouse Moth. Of note were 90 White-line Darts, another Small Angle Shades, and two Maple Prominents. For the last 20 years this latter species has only just been annual in small numbers but these two make at least 15-20 this year so far.

Orache by G.Lee

Monday 18th

The temperature is still dropping enough at night to help us as humans! Last night it was down to 13.3°C. The trap remains busy with local moths but little migrant activity. There were 336 moths of 85 species plus 116 Water Veneers. New for the year in the main trap were Rosy Rustic (a species we always consider a sign of approaching autumn), Canary-shouldered Thorn and an Ear agg.

Sunday 17th

Another clear sky ensured the night time temperature fell to 13°C. The catch trundles along with 351 moths of 99 species. Dark Arches took the lead, as Common Footman steps back, and there were 63. There were three Rush Veneers.

Saturday 16th

So far the hot days are being tempered slightly by cooler nights, last night it dropped to 13.1°C. The moon is still significant but a late riser and so there were 377 moths of 91 species. Our second Slender Brindle was the main interest. There were three Delicates but they are probably residents not migrants and there were no other migrants.

Slender Brindle by I.Hunter

Friday 15th

The steady run of good moths continued with the first Gothic since 2010.

Gothic by S.Walton

Thursday 14th

Last night the minimum was a mere 16.1°C and the catch reduced to 391 moths of 86 species. Lunar Thorn and Oak Eggar were new for the year. The feeders trap added Rosy Rustic to the list.

It will be interesting to see how the approaching heat wave affects our local moths some of which will be no more used to the heat than we are.

Wednesday 13th

Last night could have gone one of two ways and fortunately it went the best way. A thick layer of cloud meant the developing 'super' moon was obscured and the temperature did not fall below 21.1 °C.

The main trap was packed and the feeders trap tried to follow suit. The main trap had at least 845 moths of 143 species, with tens more still to work out. Indications of an arrival were Vestal, 25 Rush Veneers, 52 European Corn-borers, three Silver Y's, three Diamondbacks, and a Dark Sword-grass. A Dingy White Plume was only the second record and Large Twin-spot Carpet is only rarely recorded, as is the distinctive pyralid Rhodophaea formosa of which there were two. Also of note was the large number of green-bodied Lacewings - 195 in the main trap alone.

Trapping was also carried out between the Haven and the Whitehouse. This added several new species for the year including the rarely recorded Scarce Silver-lines, Waved Carpet, Small Dotted Buff and Small Emerald. The others were Small Scallop, Silky Wainscot, Shore Wainscot, Marbled Green, Olive, Small Rufous and Pinion-streaked Snout. The highlight was our first record of the scarce, but possibly colonising, pyralid Sciota hostilis.

Tuesday 12th

The heat continues to build and last nights minimum was 15.3 C. There were 356 moths of 88 species. Plumed Fan-foot and Yellow-tail were new for the year. The second generation of Reed Daggers has started. There was one each of Silver Y and Dark Sword-grass.

Monday 11th

A Hornet Moth came to lure at New Downs.

Sunday 10th

The very attractive Buff Arches was new for the year and Common Footman continues to have a good season with another 40 last night.

Saturday 9th

Grey Arches by I.Hunter

A muggy night with the temperature not below 14.5 Celsius encouraged an excellent variety of moths out.

The highlight in the main trap, which held 488 moths of 127 species identified so far, was our third ever (after two in the 1970's) Grey Arches.  There was also another Splendid Brocade. Other firsts for the year were Least Yellow Underwing, Wormwood, Starwort, Bordered Beauty, Fen Wainscot, and Lunar and Lesser-spotted Pinions. Four Poplar Lutestrings, three Rush Veneers, and a Pygmy Footman were also of note.

The trap by the feeders did not hold quite so many moths but did add Drinker and Dusky Sallow to the year list.

Friday 8th

Last night the cool northerly dropped eventually but it was a clear sky and the temperature fell to 10.1 Celsius. There were only 93 moths of 27 species. This did include a Cryptic Fern.

More luck was had during the day when two Lunar Hornet Moths were pheromone lured. Spurred on by this success and the heat of the day other lures were tried but with no success. The Lunar Hornets are our first records since two were mist netted in 1989 and one in 1995.

Thursday 7th

There was thick cloud last night and it felt humid. Despite a very fresh northerly getting up out of the wind the temperature did not fall below 16.6 Celsius. This increased the catch to 471 moths of 95 species. Once again Dark Arches was most numerous with 59. Slender Brindle was new for Sandwich Bay. Two Silver-barred and seven Langmaid's Yellow Underwings were of particular note.

A daytime walk along the seafront was hampered by a stiff northerly and no Bright Waves or Hummingbird Hawk-moths were noted. A Crescent Plume was a good record.

Wednesday 6th

The rollercoaster continues. Last night was mostly clear and the temperature went down a bit lower to 12.1 celsius. There were 201 moths of 59 species. Dark Arches was most numerous with 27 and there was one Dark Sword-grass.

Tuesday 5th

The minimum did not fall below 13.3 Celsius and there were actually slightly fewer moths - 520, but the variety increased to 116 species identified so far. The highlight was a Splendid Brocade, the first for several years. New for the year were Barred Rivulet and Mother of Pearl. Four Bright Waves were notable as were two Festoons and the first Rosy Footman in the main trap. White-line Dart was most numerous with 39.

Splendid Brocade by I.Hunter

Monday 4th

It did not feel that way but the thermometer said it was cooler last night-down to 10.8 Celsius. The moths were also fooled and there was a big increase to 551 moths of 115 species. Admittedly 173 of them were Water Veneers but it is still a big increase. Our second Large Emerald for the year was the most notable species. Double Lobed, Brown-tail and Cypress Carpet were new for the year. Common Footman was the next most numerous with 41. The only migrant related activity was a Silver Y and three Rush Veneers.

A trap away from the main one added a Lilac Beauty which is scarce here.

Large Emerald by I.Hunter

Sunday 3rd

The Eana argentana from the night of the 23rd has been confirmed, certainly a bit of a journey from its only known UK site in Glen Tilt! This becomes the first ever English record.

Eana argentana by I.Hunter

Last night was warmer at 13.1°C and the moths increased to 248 of 66 species. The moth of note was Sciota rhenella. We had our first record last year and it is still very scarce in the UK with less than 20 records. Dun-bar was new for the year. Most numerous were 32 Dark Arches, eight Clays were of note, as was a Delicate, and an Evergestis limbata.

Sciota rhenella I.Hunter

Saturday 2nd

Another cool night down to 9.9°C and there were just 153 moths of 40 species.

Common Footman ruled the roost with 19. A Mathew’s Wainscot was new for the year and there was a Rush Veneer.

There are still plenty of Hummingbird Hawk-moths to be seen nectaring particularly along the seafront.