There must have been a large influx of Diamond-back Moth last night. They are everywhere today. Just in the garden they are on the fences and shed and everything you touch, plants, tools etc. they fly out of. There was a brief thunderstorm and a strong east wind yesterday evening, so I suppose they came in on this.
Please see the message below. If any of you have been lucky enough to record any Clifdens in the last 2 years (and I know some of you have) it would be great if you could send me the details so I could add them to the ones I already know about. These ones are the record from the Suffolk moth group event at Hen reedbeds in 2017 and my own capture of one last year. I don’t yet have access to the database records from the last 2 years so if you have sent them in to Tony already I haven’t seen them yet.
Many apologies for the generic email, but I have sent this out to all county recorders. In September of this year we have the 20th anniversary of Moth Night http://www.mothnight.info, with the theme species being the Clifden Nonpareil C. fraxini. We are researching the current distribution of this species in the UK and have been supplied by the NMRS with all the records/data up to the end of 2016. The reason for my email is that I am hoping you can supply me with the additional data I need for 2017 and 2018 only (ideally in Excel spreadsheet format) to enable us to get a true idea of the species distribution. I appreciate some of you will have more records than others and some of you will possibly have none at all , but we would very much appreciate a reply either way – hopefully this request should not take up too much of your time. Thank you very much in advance for taking the time to look into this me. I very much look forward to receiving your replies. Best wishes Scott Barron Atropos
Most of the first part of May was dominated by cool conditions, so numbers of moths remained low. The latter part of the month was better, although I missed the last week due to a holiday. The 25th was the best night for me when I had around 100sp in 3 traps.
As always, despite some pretty poor nights there were moths of interest including new site records.
New species for the site were Chamomile shark (7th – planting Chamomile at home may have helped!), Agonopterix yeatiana (22nd, found dead in polytunnel at work) and Mompha langiella (22nd, only the 2nd time I have seen the species first one was from Essex). The langiella is also only the 2nd county record.
Other things of note starting with the macros. Great prominent, Puss moth (both seen in good numbers), Seraphim (3 on 25th), Brindled white-spot (7 on 25th) and Broad-bordered bee hawk (24th, feeding at Campion flowers in the garden). There were also lots of larvae of the early and late season species like Winter moth and Mottled umber about, no doubt helping to feed all the hungry bird chicks!
Micros of interest: Caloptilia hemidactylella (17th), Epinotia tetraquetrana (1st, only the 2nd site record), Pammene argyrana (good numbers), Adela croesella (25th), Cydia cosmophorana (3 on 25th), Tachystola acroxantha (25th, 3rd site record), Sitochroa verticalis (25th) and Tineola bisselliella (25th, in trap not in the house!).
A number of Suffolk recorders reported sightings of Coleophora amethystinella this month so it was no surprise that some turned up at IGC, with 2 on the 24th plus another on the 25th at a different location. Plenty of foodplant here so hopefully it is breeding.
A little tardy on my report as I made myself very busy at the start of June. May weather started quite poor and cool but heated up considerably towards the end of the month. Naturally the moths complied. Breached the 100+ species mark at home on 30th. Huge numbers of Treble Lines around and also doing well during the month have been Rivulet, Seraphim, Nematopogon schwarziellus and Platydra subcinerea.
My home site has been showing a tendency towards more woodland species recently. This does reflect changes locally. May moths such as Epinotia immundana and Dwarf Pug. The Tawny Marbled Minor appeared before the Marbled Minor this year and Eudonia angustea before Scoparia ambigualis. I have a few micros new for my site during May. In contrast to last year Nepticulidae have been doing well and have added; Stigmella perpygmaeella, S. crataegella and Ectoedemia louisella. Also new for my site were Phyllonorycter rajella, Glyphipterix simpliciella (in malaise trap) and Coleophora amethystinella. C. amethystinella is a big success story for Suffolk being caught by a number of moth-ers locally and I have also captured it at Tangham and Snape.
I trapped at Tangham on 25th. Lovely moths there and always a pleasure. Both the Peacock and the Sharp-angled Peacock are regulars there as are the lovely Lobesia reliquana and Ancylis mitterbacheriana. I confirmed the location for Coleophora lassella as well as picking up C. amethystinella but got a big surprise with a Barred Hook-tip. Looks like it has wandered some distance as I have not noted Beech trees in the Tangham Forest. Two species caught there were new to me, a Lampronia fuscatella and a Pammene germmana.
On 27th May I hada day as a Pollinator Monitoring Scheme volunteer at our site beside the Butley Estuary which is an opportunity to look at day flying species there. I netted Gynnidomorpha vectisana, Aristotelia brizella and Agdistis bennetii on the salt marsh and was please to find a specimen of Grapholita compositella again for a photo.
Migrants have been scarce so far this year with only Plutella xylostella and Silver Y.
Brian and I were joined by Allan Eaton at this site by Fritton Lake for my first moth night out since July 2018 and we drove on site at 9pm to be greeted by swarms of midges while setting up, which persisted in being a constant nuisance throughout the night. Not only that but I pulled off the end of one of my cables reducing me down to three traps but Brian had five, so all in all not too bad. 100 species recorded including; Cream Wave , Little Emerald, Birch Mocha, Clay Triple Lines (many). Strophedra weirana just about at every trap and lots of Ancylis mitterbacheriana. Brachmia inornatella, Lobesia reliquana also recorded. There were a few outstanding moths, Brindled White-spot is scarce up here and this is the only site I know. Without Allan we might not have seen the other two which were mega micros. Ancylis upupana which Brian and I had on the Estate in 2017 at a different site and the moth I had hoped for and talked about to Allan on the way down being Triaxomera fulvimitrella, a second record for the site for which this is still I believe the only Suffolk site, with it being unrecorded in Norfolk, one record in South Essex and a few in Cambs. Most amazingly we had written up our notes at my truck and Allan spotted a micro on my chair on the truck back seat and that was the fulvimitrella!
I’ve had a message from Trevor Goodfellow the editor of the Suffolk Argus, the newsletter of the Suffolk branch of Butterfly Conservation. He is keen to get more moth related articles in the magazine so anyone who is willing to put something together it would be most welcome. Check the branch website for details on how to get in touch.
I have received this invite for moth enthusiasts to the Africa Alive! Bioblitz, anyone interested in helping out then the contact details are listed at the end of the message.
My name is Ruth Wallis and I work at Africa Alive! In 2015, we ran our first ever 24hour bioblitz, each year since we have run either mini events or 24 hour events, adding species each time. This year we are celebrating our 50th birthday of a zoological collection being on this site and we would like to run another large 24 hour bioblitz seeing if we can bring our total to over a thousand species! We would like to invite you and anyone in your group who would be interested in spending the 20th and/or 21st July at Africa Alive! identifying species on site. If you would like to attend the days please let me know names and day you wish to come (or both) of interested parties.
I look forward to hearing from you
Kind regard Ruth (email@example.com)
Sharon Hearle from BC is planning a Grey Carpet survey day in Suffolk on Friday 31st May 10.30am – 2pm. She has got a list of sites on the Elvden Estate with Flixweed and where can be visited.
Meet on West Road in Icklingham – grid ref TL768732 Postcode IP28 6PU.
She says ‘It would be great to see some Suffolk moth recorders ( I will probably run a load of traps the night before as well). I appreciate Friday is not great for you and others that are working. It is helpful if people email to let me know they are coming along’.
She also says there are problems with the FC over cars accessing the forest – they are having a clampdown and also insist on business insurance.
Possible funding: www.suffolkbis.org.uk/news/funding?page=1
April was a slow month for me with the trap only operated on seven nights. A cool start gave way to a warm Easter, but with clear nights and a bright moon, before returning to more typical ‘April Showers’. Of the trap highlights, Streamer seems to be having a good year. I recorded two more on 21st with singles a few days either side of that. Hebrew Character and Common Quaker hung on until month end, and the first Shuttle-shaped Darts appeared on the 23rd. Singles of Brindled Beauty and Twin-spotted Quaker (both on the 8th), and one each of Iron, Lesser Swallow and Pebble Prominent on 29th were best of the rest. The bursting into leaf of the nearby Horse Chestnut also saw the first swarm of ohridella this year when 20+ where seen merrily dancing away late afternoon on 23rd. Hard also to believe that it is May already and that the season is marching on … !!
Like Raymond, I did well here in the warm spell around mid month but didn’t bother to trap on many nights later on with the cooler clear weather.
Orthosia numbers dropped off from mid month as expected, has been a good year for them here except for Powdered quaker that hasn’t been seen at all. Been some late records of regulars, with both March moth and Oak beauty being noted on the 8th. Here, has been a good year for Brindled beauty and Great prominent. Unlike Raymond has been a poor year for Frosted green with quite low numbers, normally a common species. Dotted chestnut has continued it’s good run with two more on the 8th and 24th.
Macros of interest for this site included a Streamer on the 24th – very rare here only my 4th ever record and also a nice Mullein moth on the same date, not commonly seen as an adult.
Micros were more interesting. Best was Depressaria chaerophylli, found on the 22nd, a new site record. Other species of note were Pammene argyrana (a few) and a Pammene splendidulana (third site record of this smart moth). There were also 10 Adela cuprella seen flying over a flowering Sallow by day on the 18th.