Welcome

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!

KEY

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

Friday, 23 November 2018

September Mothing 17/09/18 to 29/09/18

Here are all of the highlights from mid to the end of September in my garden to my 125w MV Robinson Trap.

Garden species count for 2018 now upto 518.

Below are the highlights and new for year species.

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

Donacaula forficella - 02/09/18 - Missed from previous posts, not common and my third garden record so really welcome. I use to pick this species up commonly at wetland reserves where the habitat is more suitable. 

Brindled Green - 15/09/18 - An absoloute beauty of a Brindled Green greeted me on Sunday morning, box fresh and worthy of a few photographs. I also caught a few more in the weeks following, some were rather grey in appearance in contrast.

Swallow-tailed Moth - 17/09/18 - This record at the time of recording was a very late record for me, my latest in fact, but since there have been many many more people recording late moths this year, more than ever before! Or are there more people suddenly recording moths these days with the advent of social media? Who knows.

Beaded Chestnut - 17/09/18 - A regular species here in my garden, and many different forms were recorded over the following weeks of which I took pleasure of photographing. 

Deep-brown Dart - 17/09/18 - Never common here with just 4 previous records, in fact..2018 was the best year for it with 3 records alone.

Spruce Carpet - 17/09/18 - A season first, generally I record these in the Spring as well as the Autumn, slightly more regular than Gre-pine here. Still waiting for Pine mind! 

Treble Brown Spot - 18/09/18 - My latest record of this species by a week exactly, nice and fresh as well and surely a 3rd brooder having recorded these in early June and again in August.

Diplodoma laichartingella - 18/09/18 - Second garden record and a larval record this rime after trapping the adult last year in June. Scarce here in Herts so very pleasing indeed.

Brick - 19/09/18 - Getting fairly common here in my garden and a moth that is maybe on the increase? A few years back it appeared to almost disappear even in prime habitat.

Dark Chestnut 19/09/18 - I like Dark Chestnut, it's an unusual dark looking moth with a real shine to it's wings. Most often encountered in the Autumn with just one record in the Spring here in 6 years.

Grey-pine Carpet - 19/09/18 - Another moth that appears in Spring after emerging in Autumn and over-wintering, never as common as Spruce so very welcome.

Large Ranunculus - 22/09/18 - Is Mr consistent here in my garden, always appearing between the 18th and 22nd of September since 2012 and flying for just 2 weeks usually, i've had upto 5 in one night before, this year they weren't as common unfortunately...just two made it to my trap.

Green-brindled Crescent - 25/09/18 - Another good looking moth and one that has a metallic green form and a darker brown form, common here in my garden.

Merveille du Jour - 25/09/18 - Probably the best looking moth here in the UK I reckon and an annual visitor to my trap here. I'm lucky to have mature Oaks at the end of my garden along the bridleway so I always get these in good numbers.

Mallow - 26/09/18 - Quite a unique species this, broad-winged and with a lovely pattern across it's wings. An annual visitor here, usually one per year.

Pandemis corylana & Pandemis cerasana - 26/09/18 - Both very late records, cerasana even later than corylana as this is a June moth here, it's rare to record both of these species as 2nd broods for me.

Caloptilia semifascia - 26/09/18 - Recorded in April earlier on in the year, it was nice to get a seasonal record of this species.

Common Marbled Carpet - 27/09/18 - A third brood of this species again isn't common here, but it was the same story across a lot of the Country with really late records that were still being reported in the first week of November!

Ruby Tiger - 27/09/18 - My latest record of Ruby Tiger by 23 days! I've recorded the Caterpillars at the end of September before, they always seem to get attracted to the MV light strangely. This adult though was in beautiful condition. I get them infrequently here in the garden, single-brooded in July.
My earliest record ever was on the 12th of March! In fact I have two March records and interestingly both were found flying on a warm sunny afternoon.

Cydalima perspectalis - 27/09/18 - Third garden record of this adventive pest species (with 2 records last year). It's certainly on the increase and spreading like Oak Processionary and Jersey Tiger are from the Thames Estuary and areas such as Richmond Park in central London. Another 3 more records were added at the start of October taking my garden total to 6.

Yellow-line Quaker - 29/09/18 - The first of the two common Autumnal Quaker's turns up bang on time, fairly common and were still hanging on a week ago here. 

Beaded Chestnuts

Brick

Dark Chestnut

Deep-brown Dart

Brindled Green

Diplodoma laichartingella

Caloptilia semifascia

Donacaula forficella

Common Marbled Carpet

Large Ranunculus

Cydalima perspectalis

Mallow

Yellow-line Quaker

Treble Brown Spot

Spruce Carpet

Ruby Tiger

Merveille du Jour



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.

Treble-bar

Clancy's Rustic

Chestnut

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

Sallow

Satellite

Scrobipalpa obsoletella

Ypsolopha sylvella

Ypsolopha vittella