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.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Carpatolechia fugitivella - first modern county record

On Thursday 25th June I caught 82 species of moth at home.  I've only just finished sorting out those that needed dissections and among these was a Gelechiid I didn't recognise.  I eventually narrowed it down to the genus Carpatolechia and found two species that can share the general appearance.  I came across a similar fugitivella first and the description in MOGBI checked out perfectly.  In particular its closest confusion species (notalella) was easily eliminated because notalella lacks the scale tufts that were evident on mine.  But fugitivella hasn't been recorded in Norfolk since the 1800s so I needed to check other species more carefully.  In doing so I came across a picture of decorella which looked extremely similar.  The references seem to think this species is easily identified by a dark bar on the costa near the base.  Well mine had a small oblong dark mark along the costa near the base, but it didn't look quite as long as supposed to be shown by decorella - and fuitivella also shows a dark spot here, so I wasn't quite sure.  The detailed description of decorella in MOGBI seemed to have some anomalies, like mine didn't show furrows on segment 2 of the labial palpus when viewed through the microscope.  Fortunately the genitalia diagrams here and on the Dissection Group looked significantly different, at least in one respect (very long processes reaching the tip of the uncus in fugitivella) and on dissection mine matched Elm Groundling Carpatolechia fugitivella perfectly, the first Norfolk record for 116 years!  Shame this insect had been too active to let me photograph it out of the pot - here's the best I could manage while it was alive...

Elm Groundling Carpatolechia fugitivella, North Elmham, 25th June

And for those who do dissections, here are its bits.  You can see one of the long processes left of the uncus but the other one broke off during preparation.

Elm Groundling Carpatolechia fugitivella (male genitalia), North Elmham, 25th June

Nothing else terribly exciting among the rest of the catch, though several new for the year for the house: White Sallow Case-bearer Coleophora albidella (gen det), Black-headed Dwarf Elachista atricomella, 2 Flax Tortrices Cnephasia asseclana, 3 Garden Grass-veneers Chrysoteuchia culmella, Grass-veneer Crambus pascuella, 2 Water Veneers Acentria ephemerella, Marsh Grey Eudonia pallida, Yellow Shell, 3 Double Square-spots, Poplar Grey and 2 Small Fan-foots.

 White Sallow Case-bearer Coleophora albidella (male gen det), North Elmham, 25th June

Black-headed Dwarf Elachista atricomella, North Elmham, 25th June

Flax Tortrix Cnephasia asseclana (female, gen det), North Elmham, 25th June

Yellow Shell, North Elmham, 25th June

Double Square-spot, North Elmham, 25th June

Poplar Grey, North Elmham, 25th June

Small Fan-foot, North Elmham, 25th June

Plenty more to keep me busy!  The other macros were Common Swift, 2 Dwarf Cream Waves, 3 Treble Brown Spots, 2 Riband Waves, Large Twin-spot Carpet, Silver-ground Carpet, Garden Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet, Green Carpet, Sharp-angled Carpet, Sandy Carpet, 2 Mottled Pugs, 3 Common Pugs, Grey Pug, Green Pug, Clouded Border, 2 Scorched Wings, 6 Brimstone Moths, Peppered Moth, 8 Willow Beauties, Common White Wave, Clouded Silver, 3 Light Emeralds, Elephant Hawkmoth, Coxcomb Prominent, Marbled Brown, Buff-tip, Orange Footman, 9 Common Footmen, White Ermine, 6 Buff Ermines, 3 Cinnabars, Heart and Club, 2 Flame Shoulders, 2 Large Yellow Underwings, 2 Ingrailed Clays, Bright-line Brown-eye, Lychnis, Clay, 3 Common Wainscots, Shoulder-striped Wainscot, 7 Brown Rustics, 2 Dark Arches, Marbled Minor (gen det), 8 Middle-barred Minors, 4 Treble Lines, 4 Uncertains, Mottled Rustic, 2 Beautiful Hook-tips, 10 Straw Dots and 2 Snouts. 

Coxcomb Prominent, North Elmham, 25th June

And the other micros were 2 Cypress Tip Moths Argyresthia cupressella, Common Rush Case-bearer Coleophora alticolella (gen det), Buff Rush Case-bearer Coleophora caespititiella (gen det), Brown House-moth Hofmannophila pseudospretella, Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, 2 Hook-marked Straw Moths Agapeta hamana, Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis cerasana, Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana, Privet Tortrix Clepsis consimilana, 2 Barred Marbles Celypha striana, 7 Common Marbles Celypha lacunana, 2 Plum Tortrices Hedya pruniana, 2 Marbled Orchard Tortrices Hedya nubiferana, Triple-blotched Bell Notocelia trimaculana, Red Piercer Lathronympha strigana, 6 Common Greys Scoparia ambigualis, 4 Little Greys Eudonia lacustrata, Small Magpie Eurrhypara hortulata and 3 Bee Moths Aphomia sociella.

Common Rush Case-bearer Coleophora alticolella (male, gen det), North Elmham, 25th June

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