My Blog's aim is to promote and encourage others to participate in the wonderful hobby that is Moth-trapping.
So why do we do it? well for some people it is to get an insight into the world of Moths, for others it is to build a list of species much like 'Twitching' in the Bird world.
The reason I do it....you never know what you might find when you open up that trap!
I hope to show what different species inhabit our Country by getting people aware of what is out there.
On this Blog you will find up-to-date records and pictures.
I run a trap regularly in my garden here in Hertfordshire and enjoy doing field trips to various localities within Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.

Please also check out the links in the sidebar to the right for other people's Blogs and informative Websites.

Thanks for looking & happy Mothing!


NFY = New Species For The Year
NFG = New Species For The Garden
NEW! = New Species For My Records

Any Species highlighted in RED signifies a totally new species for my records.

If you have any questions or enquiries then please feel free to email me
Contact Email : bensale@rocketmail.com

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Wandering along an A-road - 01/09/18

Often ignored, hedgerows if you can access them safely, can be an incredible place to beat vegetation for moths despite being right next to all of that pollution.
Maybe it's the car headlights at night that draws them into the low growing hedges and vegetation? I'm not sure... but I always seem to find plenty of moths in the most unexpected places.

An afternoon at the beginning of September was no exception with many moths netted and potted up just by tapping trees and buhes with a cane and netting anything fleeing.
It's a great bit of field work and so very simple and you get to find species that may not normally be that strongly attracted to lights.

Highlights were a second ever Caloptilia falconipennella (After finding my first during August, again during the daytime tapping vegetation) and another form of Acleris cristana.

Here is the list of what I found during a 2hr walk, numbers not noted just species.

Green Carpet
Latticed Heath
Maiden's Blush
Acleris cristana
Acleris emargana
Acleris rhombana
Aethes smeathmanniana
Agriphila geniculea
Agriphila tristella
Anthophila fabriciana
Argyresthia bonnetella
Caloptilia falconipennella
Celypha lacunana
Epinotia nisella
Epinotia tenerana
Eudonia pallida
Eudemis profundana

Acleris cristana

Acleris rhombana

Acleris rhombana

Acleris rhombana

Caloptilia falconipennella

Epinotia nisella

Epinotia nisella

Eudemis profundana

A wander through a small wood near Standon - 21/08/18

Just two species picked up during a short walk through a small wood, a lovely form of Acleris cristana and Ypsolopha sylvella.

Acleris cristana

Hertford Heath Hike - 20/08/18

Not quite a hike, but a short stroll whilst working.

A few late Summer species turned up, including many different forms of Ypsolopha ustella which were beaten from a few of the Pine trees in the vicinity.
I'm not sure why they were here, when the larvae feed on Oak? Very strange... But all other trees beaten yielded none, one Pine I netted at least 5 individuals whilst tapping the lower branches, a few more got away.
Ypsolopha horridella was the highlught, a really nice specimen...just look at those green mottled eyes, very garish indeed.

Here is the list of moths found.

Double-striped Pug
Epinotia nisella 1
Epinotia ramella 1
Epinotia tenerana 2
Ypsolopha horridella 1
Ypsolopha parenthesella 2
Ypsolopha ustella 13

Epinotia nisella

Ypsolopha horridella

Ypsolopha ustella

Ypsolopha ustella

Ypsolopha ustella

Thursday, 15 November 2018

September Mothing 10/09/18 to 16/09/18

September continued well here with moths still turning up in fairly good numbers for my garden at least, the warm weather finally ended but we were still left with fairly settled weather and with a few periods of much needed rain.

Garden species count for 2018 now upto 503.

Below are the highlights and new for year species.

Catch Report - Back Garden - Stevenage - 1x 125w MV Robinson Trap

Frosted Orange - 21/08/18 - (Missed from previous posts) Nearly annual here, but just the one record per year, such a gorgeous moth.

Rosy Rustic - 25/08/18 - (Missed from previous posts) Another beauty that I somehow missed off my list, never that common here, 1 or 2 a year.

Acleris sparsana - 10/09/18 - An annual visitor to the traps, but like most species this time of year it never turns up in great numbers.

Pink-barred Sallow - 10/09/18 - A scarce Sallow species here with just 3 garden records, nice to see and one that i've trapped commonly amongst damp and marshy habitats.

Clancy's Rustic - 11/09/18 - A lovely surprise was waiting for me on the morning of the 12th of September, a new moth for me and new to the County of Hertfordshire to boot! There had been quite a few reports of them turning up along the south coast and it was great to 'get lucky' and easily my best Macro moth of the year. Another was caught (and duly dissected by Graeme Smith) by Ian Bennell a few days after. [NEW!]

Barred Sallow - 11/09/18 - A common moth in my garden, the pictured specimen was the most striking for the year. 

Black Rustic - 11/09/18 - Another regular moth here and for most people, some years I get 4 or 5 in one night, this year was no different.

Aproaerema anthyllidella - 12/09/18 - A new moth for my garden, a welcome Gelechiidae which I encounter fairly frequently out on field trips, in woodland and grassy verges typically. [NFG] 

Treble-bar - 15/09/18 - Two examples (both checked for Lesser, which has yet to be recorded here) were found on back to back nights. A sporadic visitor to the garden trap. 

Chestnut - 16/09/18 - An earlyish season first of Chestnut was found in the trap on this date. Subsequently it's had a good year here in the garden during Autumn. 

Eudonia angustea - 16/09/18 - Stupidly uncommon here despite finding it nearly every morning to works security light, this is only my 3rd record for the garden since 2012.


Clancy's Rustic


Black Rustic

Barred Sallow

Aproaerema anthyllidella

Acleris sparsana

Frosted Orange

Pink-barred Sallow

Rosy Rustic

Eudonia angustea

Monday, 12 November 2018

September Mothing 02/09/18 to 08/09/18

My first posting of moth highlights from September, and there were a few to be very pleased with indeed, including two completely new species for my records and great additions to the garden list.

Highlights below of moths recorded in my back garden

Garden species count for 2018 now upto 493.

Here are the new for year species.

Catch Report - Back Garden - Stevenage - 1x 125w MV Robinson Trap

Scrobipalpa obsoletella - 02/09/18 - Dissected by Graeme Smith and initial thoughts were that it was Tuta absoluta, an extremely scarce moth in these parts... it turned out not to be this species, but an equally amazing record and a 2nd record for the County! A saltmarsh species turning up 60 miles from the nearest coastline! [NEW!]

Ypsolopha sylvella - 02/09/18 - A fairly regular species here, but was missing last year and I got alpella instead (Which I didn't record this year) They seem to oddly turn up on alternate years.

Duponchelia fovealis - 03/09/18 - A day later and after the great Scrobipalpa record from the previous night, I really didn't expect another new moth for me and my garden again. This is an adventive species which seems to have colonised certain parts of the UK, originally from the Med and North Africa extending to the Middle-East and even the USA. [NEW!]

Dichrorampha acuminatana - 03/09/18 - This is a scarce moth from me, with just one other record from 2014, always a late flying species of Dichrorampha, usually seen mid-August to mid-September. 

Ypsolopha vittella - 04/09/18 - This is a rare moth in Herts and maybe on the increase? As previous to this year my 2 garden records were only part of a handful of records in Hertfordshire. Not a very attractive moth, and care must be made to not confuse it with a worn sequella.

Satellite - 04/09/18 - A season first Satellite is always nice to see as they are particularly fresh after recently hatching, the spring ones are always (as should be expected, enduring our harsh winter) a little worn.

Sallow - 08/09/18 - A common moth for me and most people, I recorded a fair few during September, my very first for the year was a really striking example with the bigget dark dots on the forewings that I have ever seen. I also got the paler form f.flavescens a day later.

Lunar Underwing - 08/09/18 - Another common Macro moth and one that sports various hues and variations of ground colouring.

Dichrorampha acuminatana

Duponchelia fovealis

Lunar Underwing



Scrobipalpa obsoletella

Ypsolopha sylvella

Ypsolopha vittella

Sunday, 11 November 2018

The rest of August wrapped up

Here are the rest of my August highlights from the 8th to month end in my garden here in Stevenage.

Highlights were..

Red Underwing, only my second garden record and last (first) seen in 2016, unfortunately the damn thing escaped my massive food container that I tried to pot it in, it was mint as well :/ 
Fortunately on the same night I managed to succesfully pot my 3rd garden record of Stenolechia gemmella, not a common moth for me over the years and nice to see.

Apotomis betuletana was only a 4th garden record, a common moth on field trips in Birch woodland, but alas the garden does not have much Birch in the vicinity so it is an uncommon Tortrix here. 

Bedellia somnulentella was a good record on the 10th of August and only my second ever in 12 years (both from my garden here in Stevenage). A hedge bindweed feeder, of which the plant is abundant on our back fence and along the adjacent bridleway. 

A late Broad-barred White was found in the trap on the 21st, an annual visitor here but only as singletons. I usually encounter it in June and July.

Cacoecimorpha pronubana was found during a rare spot of gardening this year and not a regular here, a male...I have still yet to record a female in my garden of this sexually dimorphic species.

Best until last, 4 new for garden species were recorded during August, Peacock Moth, Feathered Gothic, Pyrausta despicata and Cryptoblabes bistriga.

What a month! And to think that the last 10 years i've always holidayed during this period, missing at least two weeks of mothing in August...maybe the good records were showing what I was missing!

Garden species count for 2018 now upto 486.

Here are the new for year species for August.

Catch Report - Back Garden - Stevenage - 1x 125w MV Robinson Trap

Acleris schalleriana - 14/07/18 (Missed from previous posts!) I have over 40 records now from 2018

Yponomeuta sedella - 14/07/18 (Again, missed from previous posts!) Second garden record

Red Underwing - 08/08/18

Stenolechia gemmella - 08/08/18

Agriphila geniculea - 09/08/18

Bedellia somnulentella - 10/08/18

Ypsolopha parenthesella - 16/08/18

Flame Carpet - 17/08/18

Pyrausta purpuralis - 17/08/18

Pyrausta despicata - 18/08/18 [NFG]

Centre-barred Sallow - 19/08/18 (2)

Six-striped Rustic - 19/08/18

Cryptoblabes bistriga - 19/08/18 [NFG]

Peacock Moth - 20/08/18 [NFG]

Apotomis betuletana - 20/08/18

Broad-barred White - 21/08/18

Eudemis profundana - 21/08/18

Epinotia ramella - 24/08/18

Cypress Pug - 27/08/18

Flounced Rustic - 27/08/18

Cacoecimorpha pronubana - 28/08/18

Feathered Gothic - 28/08/18 [NFG]

Pale Mottled Willow - 28/08/18

Pale Mottled Willow

Acleris schalleriana

Agriphila geniculea

Apotomis betuletana

Bedellia somnulentella

Broad-barred White

Cacoecimorpha pronubana

Flame Carpet

Feathered Gothic

Epinotia ramella

Cypress Pug

Cryptoblabes bistriga

Centre-barred Sallow

Flounced Rustic

Peacock Moth

Pyrausta despicata

Pyrausta purpuralis

Six-striped Rustic

Stenolechia gemmella

Yponomeuta sedella

Ypsolopha parenthesella