Wednesday 24th

Although it was calmer the sky cleared and the temperature was down to 11.8°C. There were 138 moths of 48 species. This included three Silver Ys and a Dark Sword-grass.

The first Jersey Tiger for the year was seen sunning itself along Sandown Road.

Tuesday 23rd

A very windy start to the night meant that the highest minimum of the year so far, 17.3°C, did not deliver a big catch. It was better than yesterday with 202 moths of 62 species. There were 19 Silver Ys, four Diamondbacks and three Dark Sword-grasses. A Light Arches was a surprise after a gap of at least three weeks.

Another Magpie Moth by the Haven continued the good showing of this species after a run of years with only one or two records each year.

Monday 22nd

The sky cleared to display a clear moon and the temperature reduced to 12.4°C. This reduced the catch to 86 moths of 42 species, none of these were new for the year and none made it into double figures. Dark Arches and Chrysoteucha culmella top scored with nine each.

The previous night was a bit more fruitful. Rosy Rustic, Mere Wainscot and Lesser-spotted Pinion were all new for the year.

Saturday 20th

Hopes were high last night as it was another warm one at 16.3°C but the sky cleared to allow bright moon to show. The catch was down to 288 moths of 102 species. Migrants were 21 Silver Ys and seven Diamondbacks. New for the year were Large Emerald, Olive, Engrailed and Barred Rivulet.

Friday 19th

A calm, humid, night with a minimum of 15.9°C produced the best catch this year of 419 moths of 132 species. The highlight was a Brussels Lace. Lychnis, Maiden's Blush and the micros Agonopterix propinquella and A. subpropinquella were all new for the year. There were 29 Silver Ys, ten Diamondbacks and two Clancy's Rustics.

A dusking walk towards the Whitehouse last night produced some nice records including Small Scallop and Dark Barred Twin-spot Carpet.

There was a Shore Wainscot along the seafront.

Brussels Lace. July 19th 2024. I Hunter

Thursday 18th

The forecast did not pick up on a bank of fog rolling in around midnight. This literally dampened activity and took the temperature down to 11.9°C. The main trap did better than a trap at the feeders - 165 moths of 53 species v. 76 of 36.

There were a few migrants with the main trap having 12 Silver Ys and four Diamondbacks and the feeders one Silver Y and two Diamondbacks.

Maple Pug and Brown Plume were new in the main trap and Scalloped Hook-tip new at the feeders.

The perils of auto correct. I sent a text about a putative Sciota hostilis but the recipient received a message about a species new to science - Scrotal hostile - Ouch!

Wednesday 17th

Although there were heavy showers overnight and the temperature went down to 13.6°C it felt humid. The catch increased to 313 moths of 76 species. Fen Wainscot, Webb's Wainscot, Blackneck and Agriphila straminella were all new for the year. There were a few migrants with 12 Silver Ys, four Diamondbacks and a Dark Sword-grass. Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing and Langmaid's Yellow Underwings continue to run neck and neck-four to five last night.

Tuesday 16th

After a venture into the often wet and windy reaches of Anglesey it was good to be back into the wet and breezy reaches of Kent. Last night thundery showers and cloud helped keep the temperature above 14.1°C. The catch improved to 184 moths of 56 species. Seventy three of these were the common grass moth Chrysoteucha culmella which is good news for the hungry insectivores out there. Wormwood, Double-lobed and Oak Nycteoline were new for the year. Last weeks pulse of Silver Ys has definitely moved on and there were just five of them.

Friday 12th

A slight improvement over the previous night in diversity with 90 of 38 species, though the temperature remained consistent at 12.1°C. Garden Tiger, Dingy Shears, Argyresthia brockeella and the local Nyctegretis lineana were new for the year.

Thursday 11th

A drop in temperature to 12.1°C resulted in a drop in the catch to 90 of 33 species. A Canary-shouldered Thorn was new for the year. In the afternoon, an Orange-tailed Clearwing was attracted to a lure.

Wednesday 10th

The Silver Y numbers had moved on but the species diversity had bumped up with 243 of 65 species. The conditions were considerably muggy overnight with the temperature only dropping to 15.5°C. Another Goat Moth was in the trap as was another Sciota rhenella. A Pearly Underwing, two European Corn-borers, 23 Silver Y's and two Diamondbacks hinted at some migration afoot. Clay, White-line Dart and Least Yellow Underwing were all new for the year.

Tuesday 9th

Despite the ongoing rain during the night, the moths enjoyed the conditions catching 306 of 43 species. However, upon inspection of the trap early in the morning, it somewhat resembled a scene straight out of the Old Testament as the cartons were smothered by an obvious arrival of Silver Y's, numbering 148 (!) inside the trap. Aside from that, a single Diamondback was the only obvious migrant whilst a Clancy's Rustic was noteworthy.

Sunday 7th

Last night started very windy and this took the temperature down to 9.9°C. It did calm down and 56 moths were caught (catches of over 500 are normally regular at this time of year). The highlights were two Langmaid's Yellow Underwings, a Dotted Fan-foot and another Poplar Lutestring.

Saturday 6th

Despite the strength of the wind it was cloudy keeping the temperature above 15.6°C and there were showers. Two traps at the Observatory caught 68 moths of 52 species. This included the very scarce pyralid Sciota rhenella. Is this another species settling in the area? This is the third year in a row they have shown up. There was also the first Dingy Footman of the year making it the ninth footman species this year.

Friday 5th

It warmed up slightly and the catch continued to improve, which is great for tomorrows moth night. There were 238 moths of 62 species. This included the first Drinker (2) and Rosy Minor. The highlight was a Red-necked Footman. There was also the third ever record of Coleophora hemerobiella.

Visitors again turned up trumps with a lovely condition Goat Moth and ten Silver-barred in one trap.

Thursday 4th

Although it did not drop below 13.4°C it was windy. The catch was 134 moths of 45 species. There were no migrants. Delicate remains in the top five counted each day, this time there were nine. There were second examples of Pigmy Footman (this time the grey form) and female Ghost Moth.

Amongst other things visitors caught the first Lunar-spotted Pinion of the year.

Wednesday 3rd

It all came crashing back down! The night started clear before cloud and showers moved in. The minimum temperature was 11.5°C. There were just 79 moths of 32 species. One of these was our 5th record of September Thorn (it flies from July!)

Daytime sightings continue to benefit from the sun and there were three more Foresters, including a copulating pair.

Water Veneer July 2nd 2024. I Hunter This moth can appear in large numbers but this one is one of the few to survive the night.
Scarce Silver-lines. Sandown Road. July 2nd. I Hunter
September Thorn. July 3rd 2024. I Hunter

Tuesday 2nd

At last a decent night. Thick cloud kept the temperature above 14.7°C giving a catch of 457 moths of 103 species. Whilst in previous years we might have had at least 200 more moths this was by far the best catch so far this year. Obscure Wainscot, Miller, Buff Footman, Kent Black Arches (4), Fan-foot, and Dotted Fan-foot were all new macros for this year. Highlights amongst the 'micros' included Vitula biviella and Evergestis limbata plus two of the scarce migrant Catropia verellus. Other migrants were thin on the ground with three each of Diamondback, Silver Y and Dark Sword-grass.

Not to be outdone a trap on Sandown Road caught our fifth ever Scarce Silver-lines.

Monday 1st

There was some cloud which kept the temperature above 12.3°C but the wind picked up. The catch was just 117 moths of 49 species. Resident species continued to appear, last night it was Scorched Wing, Dunbar, Poplar Lutestring and Cloaked Minor. The only migrant was a single Diamondback.