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, 20 June 2016

A Diamond without diamonds

The night of 9th June was an odd one.  Not all that many moths but still a good selection of micros.  New for the house was a species I am used to seeing during the day but not coming to light - Swan-feather Dwarf Elachista argentella.

Swan-feather Dwarf Elachista argentella, North Elmham, 9th June

Good counts were 6 Buff Rush Case-bearers Coleophora caespititiella and 5 Yellow-faced Bells Notocelia cynosbatella while London Dowd Blastobasis lacticolella was new for the year.  Other notable micros were Triple-spot Dwarf Elachista maculicerusella and Pointed Groundling Scrobipalpa acuminatella.

London Dowd Blastobasis lacticolelle, North Elmham, 9th June

Pointed Groundling Scrobipalpa acuminatella, North Elmham, 9th June

The other micros were 9 Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella, 2 Little Dwarfs Elachista canapennella, Common Grey Scoparia ambigualis, Narrow-winged Grey Eudonia angustea and Small Magpie Anania hortulata. Interestingly one of the Diamond-backs lacked a pale line down the dorsum or almost any trace of the diamonds.  The only hint was that the sides between the diamonds were darker than the rest of the sides of the wings.  I did dissect it just to make sure...

Dimaond-back Moth Plutella xylostella (female), North Elmham, 9th June

Among the macros only Common Footman was new for the year.  The others were 2 Common Swifts, 3 Silver-ground Carpets, Garden Carpet, Green Carpet, Mottled Pug, 3 Common Pugs, Yellow-barred Brindle, Clouded Border, Waved Umber, 2 Light Emeralds, Poplar Hawkmoth, Swallow Prominent, Pale Tussock, 2 White Ermines, 5 Cinnabars, Shears, Light Brocade, 2 Brown Rustics, 9 Treble Lines and 2 Mottled Rustics.

Common Footman, North Elmham, 9th June

Waved Umber, North Elmham, 9th June

Only a couple of caddisflies but these included my first Limnephilus marmoratus (and a Limnephilus lunatus).

Limnephilus marmoratus (female), North Elmham, 9th June

I think this beetle found in the house is Cantharis cryptica.

Cantharis cryptica, North Elmham, 9th June

We're getting our garden done at the moment and in removing our old shed the gardener found a couple of mice.  One was a casualty which he put out of its misery but the other seemed ok so he showed me.  I'm not sure it was ok, as it's not very normal behaviour for a mouse to lie on its side in the open, but as dead as it looked it was definitely breathing.  A Wood Mouse I believe.

Wood Mouse, North Elmham, 10th June

It was a better night for moths with 45 species including Cypress Tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella, Common Rush Case-bearer Coleophora alticolella, Obscure Groundling Bryotropha similis, Barred Marble Celypha striana, 3 Treble Brown Spots, Brown Silver-line, Heart and Club and Burnished Brass all new for the year.

Cypress Tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella, North Elmham, 10th June

Common Rush Case-bearer Coleophora alticolella (male, gen det), North Elmham, 10th June

Obscure Groundling Bryotropha similis (male, gen det), North Elmham, 10th June

Barred Marble Celypha striana, North Elmham, 10th June

Heart and Club, North Elmham, 10th June

Burnished Brass, North Elmham, 10th June

Other moths were Carrion Moth Monopis weaverella, 52 Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella, 3 Buff Rush Case-bearers Coleophora caespititiella, 2 Common Marbles Celypha lacunana, Rush Marble Bactra lancealana, 4 Yellow-faced Bells Notocelia cynosbatella, Triple-blotched Bell Notocelia trimaculana, Hook-streaked Grass-Veneer Crambus lathoniellus, 2 Common Greys Scoparia ambigualis, 9 Bee Moths Aphomia sociella, 3 Common Swifts, Blood-vein, 2 Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpets, 6 Silver-ground Carpets, 2 Common Marbled Carpets, 2 Broken-barred Carpets, Green Carpet, 3 Sandy Carpets, Mottled Pug, 7 Common Pugs, Brimstone Moth, 2 Light Emeralds, White Ermine, Buff Ermine, 2 Cinnabars, Heart and Dart, Flame Shoulder, Small Square-spot, 2 Shears, Rustic Shoulder-knot, 4 Brown Rustics, Clouded-bordered Brindle, Marbled Minor, Tawny Marbled Minor, Middle-barred Minor, 12 Treble Lines and Mottled Rustic.

A subimago Procloeon bifidum was a new Mayfly for me (a second invidivual was not positively identified).

Procloeon bifidum, North Elmham, 10th June

Also new was the caddisfly Polycentropus flavomaculatus - only at the time I posted this, and for 2-3 weeks after, I had it down as Polycentropus irroratus.  Females are quite difficult, at least for a novice, as after a few more I eventually concluded that the pointedness of the subgenital plate illustrated in the key is quite hard to determine, and looks rather more pointy in flavomaculatus than it's meant to.  The other caddis were in the genus Limnephilus including lunatus, marmoratus and vittatus.

Polycentropus flavomaculatus (female), North Elmham, 10th June

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