Although it has been unsuitable to run the traps for a while we are starting to get information on Gen. dets. being done on some tricky species and also results from leaf-mine surveys. A good number of new micros have been found this way. Starting with macros though we are getting help checking some of the common species aggregates by gen.det. Unfortunately in the past this information has not always been recorded and so we have no definite records of the aggs involving Rustics, Minors and Ears for instance.
With Ears we have been successful and both Saltern Ear and Ear have been confirmed. The Minors proved more difficult. A small sample varying from largish and well marked with white to smaller and bronze/brown tinted were checked. All came out as Marbled Minor so we still have to confirm Tawny Marbled nd Rufous Minor.
If anyone is aware of gen.dets done in the past on any of our moths please let us know.
The start of the night was warm enough to tempt some moths out before cloud cleared and the temperature dropped to -0.4°C. We recorded the latest ever Lesser Yellow Underwing and the joint latest Setaceous Hebrew Character (2) and Red-green Carpet. There were also three Rusty-dot Pearls.
Three traps were out last night to make the most of this lull in cold weather. A December Moth was unsurprisingly the first of the year but more unusual records included a few persistent Dark Arches that refuse to lie down for the winter, and similarly a very late Beautiful Plume. A few migrants were noted including Dark Swordgrass, Palpitra vitrealis, and Rusty-dot Pearl.
The guest appearance of a couple of mild nights has tempted the trap out of hibernation. The first night yielded a Mottled Umber and a Rusty-dot Pearl of interest.
Although it remains cold at night (2.9°C) it is warm during the day. Last night was helped by high thin cloud. The interesting moths were in the track side trap. This held our third Oak Rustic, Vestal, Silver Y, Turnip, Delicate and two Rusty Dot Pearls.
Another cold night ( 2.8°C) reduced activity to 13 moths of five species. Five were November Moth aggs and four Large Wainscots.
There was only a one degree rise in overnight temperature but it was warm and sunny during the day. This is helping some migrants survive. There were 15 moths of 12 species in the car park trap. This included two Vestals (our latest by 8 days) and a Rush Veneer. The other trap had a Delicate and our latest Pine Carpet.
There was a Hummingbird Hawk nectaring on Honeysuckle in the Whitehouse.