Thursday, 30 April 2015

Hartlebury again.

Coleophora pyrrhulipennella
Following Oliver's very useful post about his visit to Hartlebury, yesterday, I spent an hour there myself, sweeping the heather for Coleophora juncicolella and C. pyrrhulipennella larvae. In no time at all I had my first C. pyrrhulipennella in the net, easily seen against the bits of heather. I transferred the netted debris into a container to be checked later for C. juncicolella and continued for a further 45 minutes, recording eight C. pyrrhulipennella in that time.

Returning home I studied the debris from the net and eventually spotted one C. juncicolella moving about. This morning I was surprised to see only one further larva had climbed up the side of the container and it was not until lunchtime it was joined by a further ten individuals, showing just how patient you need to be with this species (at least, that was the case in this instance).

While on the common I also saw Common Heath, Cydia succedana and Small Yellow Underwing.

Patrick Clement

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Incurvaria pectinea

A couple of these little gems were active in the sunshine at Shrawley Wood this morning, flying amongst the bluebells...

Incurvaria pectinea

Monday, 27 April 2015

Hartlebury Common

I was not that far from Hartlebury Common this lunchtime so I took the opportunity to drop in and have a go at sweeping the heather in search of Coleophorid larvae.
I did not have long so I had a go at two areas, one up on the ridge and the other down low on the slope down to Sandy Lane. The technique with these is apparently to put all the debris that ends up in the net into a box and wait for the larvae to climb up the sides and reveal themselves.
My collection of sweepings from the ridge produced two cases each of Coleophora juncicolella and Coleophora pyrrhulipennella - neither of which I have seen before - so, I felt, an hour well spent.

Coleophora pyrrhulipennella

Coleophora juncicolella
Three adult moths were seen flying around while bashing the heather.
Common Heath, Esperia sulphurella and Cydia succedana.

As a Post Script to this, I inspected my box of sweepings again this morning and I was surprised to find another 10 juncicolella larvae had evaded the spiders and emerged from the debris. I had been through it yesterday under a microscope and didn't find any! So if you are trying this, let the sweepings sit overnight because these larvae can sit around immobile for quite a while.

Oliver Wadsworth.

Cameraria ohridella

The leaves have just emerged on the Horse Chestnut trees in my garden and are looking very green and fresh. 

I suspect they wont stay that way for long as a quick inspection under one of the trees found dozens of these ... in leaf litter, on the trunk and on the leaves!

Pete Smith, Dodford, Worcestershire

Horse Chestnut Leaf Miner

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Halesowen garden trap.

Caloptilia rufipennella
            A late night (1.00am) check of the garden trap paid off again with a Caloptilia rufipennella potted from surrounding vegetation. Just my third garden record and the first since 2006.

           I also recorded three Golden-rod Pugs.

                                                Patrick Clement

The garden trap

Friday night was a bit warmer than has been usual for a while so I ran a trap.
Numbers were still very low with 10 moths in total at 3am, but I did get two nice ones. I recorded Mullein last year, but I was still pleased to see it again.


The other notable moth was Silver Cloud. The first I have heard of this year and new for the garden list.

Silver Cloud

Also new for the year was White Ermine.

Oliver Wadsworth.

Surveying orchards for Celypha woodiana

As part of Becky Lashley's continuing orchard survey project with the WBRC, Tony Simpson and I joined Becky to look at three sites near Pershore last Tuesday.

One site was a small private orchard which had previously been found to host the Noble Chafer beetle. We could find no sign of the moth.
The second site was really a small arboretum in the grounds of a manor house. Here the bulk of the mistletoe was out of range even with binoculars. No luck here either.
The third site was a very old orchard on the banks of the Avon now owned by the Peoples Trust for Endangered Species. Here we did find one convincing active mine plus two more probably old ones. Enough to convince us that the moth was present at this site.
There was a good quantity of mistletoe at this orchard and we were struck, once again, by how thin on the ground mines appear to be even in good habitat. Even at our most fruitful site last year our best count was maybe a dozen mines from about 150 mistletoe laden trees! Even assuming we are missing a lot, that is still a very low population density.

Also of note was an occupied weevil mine. This confirms that you cannot assume any mine found in Mistletoe belongs to C.woodiana but we still don't know for sure if this is the same species that bores into mistletoe stems or something different.
Weevil mine - Rough Hill Orchard 21/04/2015

If they are occupied they are fairly easy to tell from Woodiana because the larva is sluggish, pale and invariably curled into a C shape. At this stage in the season a genuine woodiana mine would be considerably larger and more blister like. The larva should be green. Predated mines, especially early in the season are more likely to mislead the unwary.

Celypha woodiana - mine and final instar larva - Green Street 2014

Oliver Wadsworth

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Wyre - New Parks, Friday 24th April.

Pine Beauty
When it became clear that the forecasted rain was not going to materialise, I decided to pop over to Wyre, hoping for that elusive 'modern day' Emperor record. The site I had in mind, in Shropshire, has lots of heather with a distinct 'heathy' feel to it, but when I arrived a chill wind was blowing and it had even started to rain a little. I drove around looking for a sheltered area, crossing back into New Parks and Worcestershire, eventually settling on a venue amongst oaks but sheltered from the wind by conifers.

Spruce Carpet

Moths arrived slowly but steadily until the sky cleared and it went very quiet for a while so I packed up two of my three traps. With just one trap running, cloud cover returned and moth activity increased with 3 Great Prominent arriving just before midnight.

Nice fresh moths included a Pine Beauty and Spruce Carpet but micros were in short supply with Agonopterix alstroemeriana being the most interesting, although a bit worn.

23 species recorded, with Brindled Pug being most numerous (57). Patrick Clement

Great Prominent

Tawny Pinion, Worcester University

Probably our best catch so far on Worcester Uni campus, two Tawny Pinions were attracted to 15w actinic here on Wednesday night. Pale Tussock, Muslin Moth, Swallow Prominent and Chocolate-tip provided a supporting cast of 'fluffy moths' for everyone to enjoy!

Tawny Pinion

Brockhampton & Bringsty

As it was forecast to be a milder night last night, I ventured out to the Brockhampton Estate and ran 2 mv traps - one Robinson-type and one Skinner. It was rather disappointing, such that I decided to pack up slightly earlier than usual. 34 moths of just 11 species, with Lunar Marbled Brown topping the frequency list with 9.

Back home things faired much better, running the white Robinson, with 86 macro-moths of 26 species, with species like Brimstone, Brown Silver-line, Red Twin-spot Carpet, Small Phoenix and Chocolate-tip all new for the year. There were some micros at long last also  - mostly what look like Elachista canapennella (tbc), a Gelechid (will id later), Eudonia angstea, Acleris literana and Plutella xylostellaPeter Hall

Friday, 24 April 2015

Mansell Gamage 23rd April 2015

Expected cloud cover and temperature to hold up but it turned out to be clear and down to 1C so only 8 species. Nice Frosted Green and Scorched Carpet both new to me. The pug I spent ages looking at and have decided it must be a Brindled but would appreciate your views.
(Note: image corrected to Oak-tree Pug now)
Scorched Carpet

Oak-tree Pug

Frosted Green

Elachista freyerella

Elachista freyerella

         With cold nights there has been little in the garden trap but I did find an Elachista (formerly Cosmiotes) freyerella in my greenhouse on the 19th April, followed by a second the following day! Reading the info on the Dissection Group Website it appears advisable to check genitalia combined with head colour for a positive id.
                                               Patrick Clement

Trench Wood 23rd April

The mostly clear skies and crescent moon plus plummeting temperatures made it slow work with just 17 species to show in two MVs in just over two hours. A subtle Seraphim and an early Ancylis badiana kept 2 Pebble Prominents, 3 Swallow Prominents and 2 Chocolate-tips company Steve Whitehouse
Trench Wood: Ancylis badiana

Trench Wood: Seraphim

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Warndon Tuesday 21st April

Despite hardly any moths in my garden Robinson overnight a female Emperor Moth (NFG), a Chocolate-tip and an Oak-tree Pug (NFY) provided some quality - Steve Whitehouse
Warndon: Chocolate-tip

Warndon: female Emperor

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Psychoides verhuella

Psychoides verhuella

   This moth had emerged, when I checked today, reared from larva found on Hart's-tongue Fern in the garden.

While I record both P. verhuella and P. filicivora at the larval stage in the garden, I have only seen the latter as adult.
Patrick Clement

Monday, 20 April 2015

Mansell Gamage Garden 16th April 2015

New to Herefordshire, dusted off my Skinner 15w battery trap last week. Now to dust off my knowledge as well, which I hope you can help me with! Pleased to get 10 species with a couple new to me.

First up to show you is a Silver Cloud.

Silver Cloud

Silver Cloud

Then one I'm not sure about but think it's an Oak Nycteoline.
Any thoughts?
Oak Nycteoline

And a nice sight of a Waved Umber doing it's thing on an old tree trunk.
Waved Umber

 Penny Hurt

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Elachista cinereopunctella

Back on the 17th March I posted about the rather pretty red spotted larvae of  Elachista cinereopunctella.
One of has now emerged...

Elachista cinereopunctella
Many thanks to Tony for finding the larvae of this rarely photographed moth.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

More from Blackhouse

I was just preparing a post about our visit to Blackhouse Wood when I found that Patrick had covered it very nicely. So I will just add a photo of Acleris literana. This one not as striking as some, but still a very smart moth and always a joy to see.
Acleris literana
Oliver Wadsworth

Blackhouse Wood, 17th April 2015

Despite plunging temperatures, four of us enjoyed an evening light-trapping at Blackhouse Wood yesterday. Along with the usual moths, micros included Acleris cristanaSemioscopis avellanella, 2 Acleris literana and a Schreckensteinia festaliella.
An early Small Waved Umber was caught along with 4 Square Spots. Brindled Beauty, Nut Tree Tussock and Pebble Prominent were NFY (for me at least).  Patrick Clement
Square Spot
Pebble Prominent
Small Waved Umber
Semioscopis avellanella

Friday, 17 April 2015

Haugh Wood

This weeks night time temperature forecast has been a little wayward. I think last night was the mildest in the end, albeit still not tropical. Robin and myself ran 4 traps at Haugh Wood in Herefordshire. As expected at this time of year we both caught similar species. For me, I recorded 148 moths of 25 macros and 3 micros (with a couple still to id). Combined we were well into the 30's regarding species numbers. Broom-tip was out and about with double figure numbers and Prominents just making an appearance also, with Lesser Swallow and Pale. It was nice to see a Scarce Tissue too (perfect for a cold night and runny nose!). Peter Hall & Rob Hemming

Haugh Wood: Broom-tip
Haugh Wood: Lesser Swallow Prominent

Halesowen, 16th April, 2015

Acleris literana
Grey Birch

   Not too bad last night despite a cool breeze. Shuttle-shaped Dart and Grey Birch were NFY and my second Acleris literana of the season was a smartly marked individual, if a little worn.

Dyseriocrania subpurpurella


I have always assumed these heavily spotted forms of subpurpurella to be f. fastuosella, but I'm not entirely sure.

Also had Caloptilia betulicola/elongella but as I have already recorded both species I shan't be chopping it to find out which of the two it is. 

Patrick Clement

Dodford, Worcestershire Garden

After a few weeks of "The Usual Suspects" the weather has got warmer and some more interesting moths are appearing.

As I moved to Worcestershire from Warwickshire at the end of last Summer I'm not sure what to expect from this garden but one nice thing is that most are New for Site as this is my first spring here.

I also had some nice Firsts for me in the shape of Tawny Pinion and Blossom Underwing.

Pete Smith

Blossom Underwing

Brindled Beauty

Tawny Pinion

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Mompha langiella

Mompha langiella
 I had been working in the garden, leaving the   kitchen door open, and on my return there was an  assortment of insects on the inside of the window, amongst them a Mompha langiella. No time to photograph it so this is one from the garden that I did photograph a few years ago.  Patrick Clement

Recent Warndon Moths

Mondays garden trap held the first male Elachista canapennella of the year together with another Scrobipalpa acuminatella (thanks for confirming Patrick). Leek Moths nightly now thanks to neighbours vegetable garden. Tuesday's clear skies heralded another Brindled Beauty and a male Muslin Moth. Steve Whitehouse
Warndon: Brindled Beauty

Warndon: Muslin

Bringsty Common

Whilst I travelled abroad to meet some of the Worcester group at Wyre last night, I ran the white Robinson in the garden. It was another cold night again, but moth numbers were impressive despite that. I recorded 138 individuals, with Hebrew Character topping the charts at 32, followed by Clouded Drab and Brindled Beauty at 24 each. Had my first Acleris literana. Meanwhile the night before I went to the Brockhampton Estate to try my luck. Very chilly and very quiet with just 58 moths recorded. These included a very early Spruce Carpet and one Plutella xylostella. Peter Hall
Brockhampton: Water Carpet

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

More micros, Halesowen.

This warm weather is definitely bringing out more micros here. As well as Diurnea fagella and Eriocrania subpurpurella, last night I had Caloptilia falconipennella, Calybites phasianipennella and Elachista canapennella.
If I get time to take any photographs I'll add them later.
                                                                                         Patrick Clement

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Caloptilia cuculipennella

Caloptilia cuculipennella
As we had a comparatively late night last night I decided to check the garden trap before retiring to bed. Just as well I did as this little moth was on top of the perspex and might not have been there in the morning. Also of note, one Diamond-back.

Patrick Clement

Monday, 13 April 2015

Tiddesley extras

Nice to see FFY several Lunar Marbled Brown, Dyseriocrania subpurpurella, a Semioscopis steinkellneriana and a plain chocolate form (with cream head and thorax) Acleris hastiana together with 7 smart Frosted Greens in my Friday effort. Steve Whitehouse
Frosted Green: Tiddesley

Psychoides filicivora

Psychoides filicivora

Today I noticed this Psychoides filicivora had emerged from the larva I collected earlier in the year on Hart's-tongue Fern growing in the garden. I'm assuming the protruding abdomen means it's a female and she is emitting pheromones? (I couldn't smell anything!).

Patrick Clement

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Tiddesley Wood. 10/04/15

A rather quiet night at Tiddesley produced a reasonable list between 7 traps.
Perhaps of note were Carpatolechia decorella which was new for the site, as was, surprisingly, Water Carpet.

A rather unusual Caloptilia semifascia had me scratching my head for a while and a nice fresh Brindled Pug filled a gap in my photo collection.

Caloptilia semifascia

Brindled Pug


Oliver Wadsworth