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

Herts Recent Notables and Rarities Reported

Sunday, 9 August 2020

You couldn't make this up, honest!

Last night the trap was full of Straw Underwing, 52 of the blighters! Previous years I would just get into double-figures per session at the very most.

Back to the topic..

I've been having issues with numerous cats in our garden, pooping, digging, catching moths, playing with my egg trays and sunbathing in front of the 250 watt bulb!

My brother in law has the same problem and put me onto one of these solar scarers, i've yet to see it work but we will see.

So I was going through my trap and on one tray, well you wouldn't believe it...there was a cat in the trap, this wasn't just any old feline though, it was a Large Tabby and a garden first! One I haven't seen for 10 years, what are the chances of getting a Tabby moth on the same night as installing a Tabby cat deterrent :D

It is the 747th species for my garden.

Saturday, 8 August 2020

Catch Report - 22/07/20 - Back Garden

Another warm night on the 22nd of July with lows of a very respectable 17 degrees and with lashings of cloud cover and no rain, 64 species were noted in and around the trap.

I did expect a few more new for year species that were jotted down, but with one new garden moth and two species that didn't feature in 2019 I was suitably pleased.

Coleophora albitarsella was a new moth for me and my garden, both Dingy Footman & Slender Pug were absent last year and it was great to get both of the common Pyrausta species side by side.

One moth needs double checking, an Ocnerostoma species and proably Ocnerostoma friesei, a moth i've recorded twice before here.

Garden species count for 2020 now upto 393.

Only New For Year Species Reported

125w MV Robinson Trap min 13c at 4:15am

Catch Report - 22/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

Dingy Footman 1 [NFY]
Slender Pug 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths

Coleophora albitarsella 1 [NFG]
Pyrausta purpuralis 1 [NFY]

Coleophora albitarsella
Coleophora albitarsella

Dingy Footman
Ocnerostoma sp

Pyrausta aurata (left) Pyrausta purpuralis (right)

Slender Pug

Wednesday, 5 August 2020

Field Trip - Bramfield Park Woods - 15/07/20

My last trip out that I did to Bramfield Park Woods was a very successful night, species are slowly dropping off and now we appear to be past the peak 200+ species nights of dreams.

Nevertheless, some really lovely moths were still on the wing and to top it all off, I managed a new moth species for my records, the Balsam Carpet.
Not a particularly common moth, and great to see, albeit in a rather poor condition.

Below is the full list of moth species from the night.

Catch Report - 15/07/20 - Bramfield Park Woods - Central Herts - 4 traps - 1x 125w MV Trap, 1x 160w MBT Trap, 1x 250w Clear MV Robinson Trap & 1x 40w U-Tube + 15w Actinic tube & 15w Synergetic tube Trap

81 Macro species & 62 Micro species - 143 species in total

Macro Moths

Balsam Carpet
Black Arches
Bright-line Brown-eye
Brimstone Moth
Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
Brown-line Bright-eye
Buff Arches
Buff Ermine
Buff Footman
Clouded Border
Common Carpet
Common Footman 
Common Rustic 
Common White Wave
Dark Arches
Dingy Footman
Dotted Fan-foot
Double Lobed
Double Square-spot 
Double-striped Pug
Dwarf Cream Wave
Elephant Hawk-moth
Flame Shoulder
Foxglove Pug
Iron Prominent
Jersey Tiger 
July Highflyer
Kent Black Arches
Knot Grass
Large Emerald 
Large Yellow Underwing
Latticed Heath
Least Carpet 
Lesser Yellow Underwing
Marbled White Spot
Minor Shoulder-knot
Mottled Beauty
Nut-tree Tussock
Oak Hook-tip
Oak Nycteoline
Pale Prominent
Peach Blossom
Pebble Hook-tip
Peppered Moth
Pine Hawk moth
Poplar Grey 
Poplar Hawk-moth
Privet Hawk-moth
Red Twin-spot Carpet
Riband Wave
Rosy Footman
Rufous Minor
Scalloped Hook-tip
Scalloped Oak
Scarce Footman
Scarce Silver Lines
Shaded Broad-bar
Silver Y
Single-dotted Wave
Slender Brindle
Small Fan-foot
Small Fan-footed Wave
Smoky Wainscot
Swallow Prominent
Swallow-tailed Moth
Tawny barred angle 
Willow Beauty

Micro Moths

Acleris forsskaleana
Acleris laterana/comariana
Acrobasis consociella
Acrobasis repandana
Agapeta hamana
Agonopterix alstromeriana
Agriphila tristella
Alucita hexadactyla
Anacampsis blatterialla
Apotomis betuletana
Archips xylosteana
Argyresthia albistria
Argyresthia brockeella
Argyresthia goedartella
Athrips mouffetella
Batia lunaris
Blastobasis adustella
Brachmia blandella
Caloptila semifascia
Carcina quercana
Catoptria pinella 
Celypha lacunana
Chrysoteuchia culmella
Cnephasia sp
Cydalima perspectalis
Cydia fagiglandana
Cydia splendana
Dioryctria abietella
Ditula angustiorana
Emmetia marginea
Endotricha flammealis
Epagoge grotiana
Epinotia abbreviana
Epinotia brunnichana
Eucosma cana
Eudemis profundana
Eudonia lacustrata
Eudonia mercurella
Euzophera pinguis
Gypsonoma dealbana
Hedya pruniana
Hedya salicella
Helycystogramma rufescens
Hofmannophila pseudospretella
Hypsopygia costalis
Monochroa cytisella
Morophaga choragella
Notocelia uddmanniana
Paraswammerdamia nebulella
Phycita roborella
Phyllonorycter messaniella
Phyllonorycter nicelii
Pleuroptya ruralis
Pyrausta purpuralis 
Rhopobota naevana
Scoparia ambigualis
Spilonota ocellana
Sycopacma sp
Yponomeuta cag mal pad
Yponomeuta evonymella
Ypsolopha dentella
Zeiraphera isertana
125w Homemade MV Trap

250w Clear MV Robinson Trap

15w and 40w Actinic Trap

Balsam Carpet

Brown-line Bright-eye

Epinotia brunnichana

Eudemis profundana

Jersey Tiger

Monochroa cytisella

Monday, 3 August 2020

Catch Report - 21/07/20 - Back Garden

Just a smattering of new species for the year on the 21st of July, and all expected species here, the best being the tiny micro Cosmiotes stabilella which as become annual only in recent years.

Some variation was also observed in Straw Underwing, which is having an excellent year with over 20 records so far as of the 03rd of August.

Still trying to catch up with my moth reports, but it's tough going.

Garden species count for 2020 now upto 389.

Only New For Year Species Reported

125w MV Robinson Trap min 13c at 4:15am

Catch Report - 21/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

September Thorn 1 [NFY]
Straw Underwing 3 [NFY]
Square-spot Rustic 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths

Cosmiotes stabilella 1 [NFY]

Cosmiotes stabilella

September Thorn

Straw Underwing

Straw Underwing

Thursday, 30 July 2020

Another garden first, two of them with Duskies & Oaks

Another cracking night on the 18th of July was had in my garden here in Stevenage and despite the temperatures not being blisteringly high (max 22c) the minimum did not fall away below 15.5c and with a muggy feel with dominant cloud cover.

9 new for year species was great and included some quite scarce moths for here.

Oak Eggar, a really large Female as well, was only my 2nd garden record after first recording it last year.
A third Dioryctria abietella of the year was pleasing as well as a smart Clavigesta purdeyi, again scarce here for lack of coniferous trees.

Best of all were not one but two Gelechia scotinella, a moth i've recorded at Home Wood in Bedfordshire a few years back now.
One had a chunk out of it's wing, but it was just about identifiable with enough markings present including the white thoracic dot.

Garden species count for 2020 now upto 385.

Only New For Year Species Reported

250w MV Clear  Robinson Trap min 15.5c at 4:30am

Catch Report - 18/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

Dusky Sallow 1 [NFY]
Dusky Thorn 2 [NFY]
Oak Eggar 1 [NFY]
Tree-lichen Beauty 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths

Blastobasis adustella 1 [NFY]
Cameraria ohridella 1 [NFY]
Clavigesta purdeyi 1 [NFY]
Elachista canapennella 1 [NFY]
Gelechia scotinella 2 [NFG]

Blastobasis adustella

Cameraria ohridella

Clavigesta purdeyi

Dusky Sallow

Dusky Thorn

Elachista canapennella

Gelechia scotinella

Oak Eggar

Tree-lichen Beauty

Tuesday, 28 July 2020

Catch Report - 14/07/20 - Back Garden

A new garden moth was awaiting me on the 14th of July, the unusual Drepanidae, Scalloped Hook-tip.
Moth species no.745 for the garden and the 5th new macro moth species this year

Also it was nice to record both Galleria mellonella (Wax Moth) and Ear Moth. Both scarce species here, notable the Ear Moth (last and first seen in 2015 with just one previous record here).

Also another observation, Agonopterix alstromeriana is typically common out in the field in Spring as it over-winters and comes out of hibernation, but I haven't seen one in Spring for 4 years now, and the new for year examples hatch quite consistently between the 12 and 15th of July here.

Garden species count for 2020 now upto 376.

Only New For Year Species Reported

125w MV  Robinson Trap min 12c at 4:30am

Catch Report - 14/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

Ear Moth 1 [NFY]
Scalloped Hook-tip [NFG]

Micro Moths

Agonopterix alstromeriana 1 [NFY]
Carpatolechia fugitivella 1 [NFY]
Galleria mellonella 1 [NFY]

Agonopterix alstromeriana

Carpatolechia fugitivella

Ear Moth

Galleria mellonella

Scalloped Hook-tip

Monday, 27 July 2020

A superb catch under average conditions

I'm not sure why the 13th of July was such a good catch in my garden.
With highs on only 22 degrees and dropping to 15 again, I thought I would struggle, especially as we were experiencing brief showers in the afternoon.
I put it down to the increased humidity, something that has been a feature of most of July this year.

Highlights were plentiful, with a migrant Dark Sword-grass, a wandering Kent Black Arches and two stunning Black Arches and also my favourite grey moth, the Sycamore. Just some of the new for the year species.

It was also a double helping of both Agapeta and Pandemis, all for species appearing late this year.
Garden species count for 2020 now upto 371.

Only New For Year Species Reported

250w Clear MV  Robinson Trap min 15c at 4:30am

Catch Report - 13/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

Black Arches 2 [NFY]
Cabbage Moth 1 [NFY]
Dark Sword-grass 1 [NFY]
Kent Black Arches 1 [NFY]
Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing 2 [NFY]
Maple Pug 1 [NFY]
Red Twin-spot Carpet 1 [NFY]
Sycamore 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths

Agapeta hamana 1 [NFY]
Agapeta zoegana 1 [NFY]
Eucosma hohenwartiana 1 [NFY]
Pandemis cerasana 1 [NFY]
Pandemis heparana 1 [NFY]
Rhopobota naevana 1 [NFY]
Yponomeuta cag/mal/pad sp 1 [NFY]
Ypsolopha ustella 1 [NFY]

Agapeta zoegana

Black Arches

Dark Sword-grass

Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing


Yponomeuta cag/mal/pad sp

Ypsolopha ustella

Saturday, 25 July 2020

Two new Nemophora species for my records

At work the last few weeks, I have been lucky to be able to glance regularly at the flora on the estate.

Whilst doing so, I've spotted many butterflies, moths and other insects.

On the 13th of July I was strimming and raking a patch of stinging nettles away from a small piece of chalk grassland next to our office car park at the Box Moor Trust Centre.
In the car park is plenty of Knapweed, Lady's Bedstraw, Bird's-foot Trefoil and Field Scabious, the latter is a foodplant associated with the day-flying longhorn moth, Nemophora metallica.

A quick scan whilst in the area, revealed 2 moths dancing around the heads of the flowers, with the breeze they weren't keen on settling so I managed to coax one into a pot when it got near the ground.

On closer inspection, Nemophora metallica has such beautiful green eyes.

The next day he was released (A male with long antennae) in the same spot.

Roll on to the end of the week, and on the 17th of July I was checking on some sheep that were grazing a scrubby area on the edge of Bovingdon Brickworks, when, walking back, I spotted another brightly coloured day-flying moth feeding from a Teasel in flower.

It turned out to be my first ever Nemophora cupriacella, a female this time and my 8th species (out of 10 possible in the family) that I've recorded in this Country.

I still need to find fasciella and minimella… maybe one day!

Nemophora cupriacella

Nemophora metallica

Thursday, 23 July 2020

Catch Report - 12/07/20 - Tatty Lackey

Another report from over two weeks ago sees me playing catch up again, the joys of work and being a parent are so real during peak moth season!

Another warm still night was upon us, with lows of 14 degrees it was lights on once more after a break on the previous night.

Highlights were a tatty Lackey, not common here and the first slice of better migrant action, a worn Pearly Underwing.
Slender Brindle was also very welcome and usually another seldom seen moth in my garden trap (This year however, I've had 4 since this record).

Garden species count for 2020 now upto 355.

Only New For Year Species Reported

125w MV Robinson Trap min 14c at 4:30am

Catch Report - 12/07/20 - Back Garden - Stevenage - North Herts

Macro Moths

Lackey 1 [NFY]
Lime-speck Pug 1 [NFY]
Pearly Underwing 1 [NFY]
Shaded Broad-bar 1 [NFY]
Slender Brindle 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths

Agriphila straminella 1 [NFY]
Borkhausenia fuscescens 1 [NFY]
Elachista albifrontella 1 [NFY]
Mompha propinquella 1 [NFY]

Agriphila straminella

Borkhausenia fuscescens

Elachista albifrontella


Lime-speck Pug

Mompha propinquella

Pearly Underwing

Shaded Broad-bar

Slender Brindle