A diary of my mothing activity covering highlights and photos from my moth trapping activities. Mainly Norfolk (UK), occasionally beyond. I may mention other wildlife sightings here, especially insects, but for birds see my birding diary.

Monday, 29 June 2015

East Wretham Heath

I was absolutely knackered last weekend but I just couldn't resist a Norfolk Moth Survey event in the Brecks at East Wretham Heath.  Head thumping, I turned up along with Dave and joined a good crowd of other hopefuls.  First bit of dusking while we waited to go in produced a few nice moths including Meadow Dwarf Elachista triatomea and Powdered Grass-veneer Thisanotia chrysonuchella.

Powdered Grass-veneer Thisanotia chrysonuchella, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Meadow Dwarf Elachista triatomea, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

I netted a pale Bryotropha sp., a terrella-type but in view of its paleness I wondered if it might be one of the other similar species like desertella (for some reason I mistakenly had it in my head that desertella was a Breckland species).  I also retained a darker example, as much as anything in order to be able to confirm the presence of terrella as well.  On returning home I quickly established that terrella can often be that pale and that desertella is in fact mainly a coastal species in Norfolk and decidedly rare inland, so it was no surprise that the first one turned out to be Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella.  What was then very much a surprise was that the darker one turned out to be Desert Groundling Bryotropha desertella!  You can see in the photos below how the desertella is distinctly narrower than the terrella.  I didn't notice it in the field but at home it was also obviously smaller.

Desert Groundling Bryotropha desertella (male, gen det), East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Cinerous Groundling Bryotropha terrella (female, gen det), East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Several Gold Swifts were displaying beside where I set up my light:

Gold Swift, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

A wander round other people's traps provided a few good moths such as Ghost Moth, Fox Moth, the first of 7 Small Elephant Hawkmoths, Clouded Buff and my first ever Mint Bent-wing Pseudopostega crepusculella.

Ghost Moth, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Fox Moth, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Small Elephant Hawkmoth, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Back at my sheet I was extremely pleased to find a Rosy Marbled, a Breckland special that I'd not seen before, and also the first of 2 Red-necked Footmen.

Rosy Marbled, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Red-necked Footman, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

By now my headache was killing me and the extreme tiredness was too much.  So rather than continuing to do the rounds with the others I headed back to my car and slept.  An hour or two later I awoke, just in time to meet Richard and Dave who'd brought a couple of moths back from other traps that they thought I might like to see.  Indeed I did, especially this absolutely superb Cream-spot Tiger, a new UK moth for me and especially pleasing after missing one at last year's Breckland NMS event.

Cream-spot Tiger, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

They also brought me Festoon, a species I'd only seen once before, and Purple Clay.

Festoon, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Purple Clay, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

I missed a lot through being asleep most of the night and not very 'with-it' when I wasn't snoozing, but still saw plenty to keep me thoroughly entertained.  The other stuff I noted down were Yellow-barred Long-horn Nemophora degeerella, Hook-marked Straw Moth Agapeta hamana, 8 Barred Fruit-tree Tortrices Pandemis cerasana, Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana, 4 Flax Tortrices Cnephasia asseclana (gen det), 10 Green Oak Tortrices Tortrix viridana, 2 Common Marbles Celypha lacunana, 2 Plum Tortrices Hedya pruniana, Marbled Orchard Tortrix Hedya nubiferana, Red Roller Ancylis mitterbacheriana, 3 Spotted Shoot Moths Rhyacionia pinivorana, Barred Grass-veneer Agriphila inquinatella, 15 Little Grass-veneers Platytes cerussella, Water Veneer Acentria ephemerella, 8 Meadow Greys Scoparia pyralella, 2 Brown China-marks Elophila nymphaeata, Ringed China-mark Parapoynx stratiotata, Small Magpie Eurrhypara hortulata, Twin-barred Knot-horn Homoeosoma sinuella, Riband Wave, 2 Silver-ground Carpets, Yellow Shell, 2 Green Carpets, Sharp-angled Carpet, 2 Grey Pugs, 30 Brown Silver-lines, 2 Brimstone Moths, Pale Oak Beauty, 2 Bordered Whites, 3 Lime Hawkmoths, Eyed Hawkmoth, Coxcomb Prominent, Pale Prominent, 2 Marbled Browns, Buff-tip, Lobster Moth, Pale Tussock, Orange Footman, Buff Ermine, 2 Cinnabars, Least Black Arches, Heart and Dart, Flame Shoulder, Large Yellow Underwing, Shoulder-striped Wainscot, Brown Rustic, Marbled Minor (gen det), Middle-barred Minor, Treble Lines, 2 Marbled White Spots and 8 Straw Dots. 

Lime Hawkmoth, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Bordered White, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Peppered Moth, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Pale Oak Beauty, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Spotted Shoot Moths Rhyacionia pinivorana, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Barred Grass-veneer Agriphila inquinatella, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis cerasana, East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Acorn Weevil (I think), East Wretham Heath, 20th June

Broad-bordered White, Green Silver-lines and a Ghost

Of the 51 species recorded on Thursday 18th only 3 were new for the year, and two of them overdue: Garden Pebble Evergestis forficalis and Dark Arches.  The third was more impressive, a species I only saw for the first time this time last year: Broad-bordered White.

Broad-bordered White, North Elmham, 18th June

Not quite as scarce but looking good in the adjacent eggbox compartment to the Broad-bordered White was this Varied Coronet.

Varied Coronet, North Elmham, 18th June

Continuing the trend white-and-black to black-and-white moths, here's a Marbled Minor.  Dissection confirmed both this species and Tawny Marbled Minor present.

Marbled Minor (male, gen det), North Elmham, 18th June

Tawny Marbled Minor (male, gen det), North Elmham, 18th June

Always good to get 4 species of Hawkmoth: Privet Hawkmoth, Poplar Hawkmoth, Eyed Hawkmoth and Elephant Hawkmoth.

Elephant Hawkmoth, North Elmham, 18th June

Eyed Hawkmoth, North Elmham, 18th June

The others were Cypress Tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella, 3 Common Marbles Celypha lacunana, 3 Hook-streaked Grass-Veneers Crambus lathoniellus, 6 Common Greys Scoparia ambigualis, 3 Small Magpies Eurrhypara hortulata, Bee Moth Aphomia sociella, Common Plume Emmelina monodactyla, Blood-vein, 2 Treble Brown Spots, 5 Silver-ground Carpets, Common Marbled Carpet, Green Carpet, Common Pug, Treble-bar, Brimstone Moth, Common White Wave, 2 Light Emeralds, Pale Tussock, Scarce Footman, 5 Common Footmen, 3 Buff Ermines, Cinnabar, 10 Heart and Darts, Flame, 2 Flame Shoulders, 4 Ingrailed Clays, 3 Small Square-spots, Shears, Lychnis, Common Wainscot, 2 Shoulder-striped Wainscots, Rustic Shoulder-knot, 4 Brown Rustics, Middle-barred Minor, 5 Treble Lines, Uncertain, Vine's Rustic, Mottled Rustic, 2 Burnished Brasses, Spectacle and 3 Snouts.

Treble-bar, North Elmham, 18th June

Orange Ladybird, North Elmham, 18th June

Friday also saw 51 species, including new for the year Ghost Moth, Heart and Club, Small Angle Shades and perhaps my favourite moth of all, Green Silver-lines.

Ghost Moth, North Elmham, 19th June

Green Silver-lines, North Elmham, 19th June

Heart and Club, North Elmham, 19th June

Small Angle Shades, North Elmham, 19th June

The others were Case-bearing Clothes Moth Tinea pellionella (gen det), White-shouldered House-moth Endrosis sarcitrella, Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana, Common Marble Celypha lacunana, 2 Plum Tortrices Hedya pruniana, 5 Hook-streaked Grass-Veneers Crambus lathoniellus, 2 Meadow Greys Scoparia pyralella, 7 Common Greys Scoparia ambigualis, 2 Small Magpies Eurrhypara hortulata, Common Swift, Treble Brown Spot, 5 Silver-ground Carpets, 3 Common Marbled Carpets, 2 Common Pugs, 2 Clouded Borders, 2 Scorched Wings, Peppered Moth, Willow Beauty, 2 Mottled Beauties, Poplar Hawkmoth, Elephant Hawkmoth, Orange Footman, 4 Common Footmen, 4 White Ermines, 2 Buff Ermines, Cinnabar, 7 Heart and Darts, 4 Flame Shoulders, Ingrailed Clay, 2 Small Square-spots, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Nutmeg, Bright-line Brown-eye, Common Wainscot, 2 Shoulder-striped Wainscots, Rustic Shoulder-knot, 4 Brown Rustics, Dusky Brocade, Marbled Minor (gen det), Tawny Marbled Minor (gen det), 3 Middle-barred Minors, 10 Treble Lines, 3 Uncertains, 2 Spectacles, 4 Straw Dots and Snout. 

Dusky Brocade, North Elmham, 19th June

Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella (female, gen det), North Elmham, 19th June

Friday, 26 June 2015

Last Wednesday

There were 115 moths of 51 species last Wednesday night, including several new for the year.  Among those were three species that I've not seen very often: Hedge Case-bearer Coleophora striatipennella, Small Seraphim and Pale-shouldered Brocade.

Hedge Case-bearer Coleophora striatipennella (male, gen det), North Elmham, 17th June

Pale-shouldered Brocade, North Elmham, 17th June

Small Seraphim, North Elmham, 17th June

Also new for the year, at least for the garden, were Small Grey Eudonia mercurella, Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata, Treble Brown Spot, Scarce Footman, 2 Flames  and Uncertain.

Small Grey Eudonia mercurella, North Elmham, 17th June

Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata, North Elmham, 17th June

Treble Brown Spot, North Elmham, 17th June

Scarce Footman, North Elmham, 17th June

Flame, North Elmham, 17th June

Uncertain, North Elmham, 17th June

Numbers were provided by 16 Buff Ermines but I was just as impressed with a count of 4 Elephant Hawkmoths.

Elephant Hawkmoth, North Elmham, 17th June

The rest were Little Dwarf Elachista canapennella, Hook-marked Straw Moth Agapeta hamana, 5 Common Marbles Celypha lacunana, Plum Tortrix Hedya pruniana, Yellow-faced Bell Notocelia cynosbatella, Hook-streaked Grass-Veneer Crambus lathoniellus, Little Grey Eudonia lacustrata, Bee Moth Aphomia sociella, Common Plume Emmelina monodactyla, 2 Common Swifts, 4 Silver-ground Carpets, Green Carpet, Sandy Carpet, 3 Common Pugs, Brimstone Moth, Peppered Moth, Common White Wave, 4 Light Emeralds, Poplar Hawkmoth, Swallow Prominent, 2 Marbled Browns, 5 Common Footmen, 4 White Ermines, 2 Cinnabars, 6 Heart and Darts, 2 Small Square-spots, 2 Shears, Lychnis, Common Wainscot, Shoulder-striped Wainscot, Rustic Shoulder-knot, 2 Brown Rustics, Middle-barred Minor, Marbled Minor, 4 Treble Lines, 3 Mottled Rustics, Burnished Brass, 2 Spectacles, 8 Straw Dots and 3 Snouts. 

Plum Tortrix Hedya pruniana, North Elmham, 17th June

Little Grey Eudonia lacustrata, North Elmham, 17th June

Sandy Carpet, North Elmham, 17th June

Found this in the house next morning.  Don't like spiders but this was a pan-tick, Larinioides cornutus, I think.

Larinioides cornutus, North Elmham, 18th June

In yesterday's post I forgot to mention this beetle, my first Cantharis pallida if I've identified it correctly.

apparent Cantharis pallida, North Elmham, 16th June