Birds, Leps, Observations & Generalities - the images and ramblings of Mark Skevington. Sometimes.

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Before Shell Suits Went Birding

A post title that's sure to mean nothing to anyone who never saw the photo of LRG Ego out twitching in his highly flammable best. Long before that though, such garb was being badly worn in 80s music videos, like this one:

Great 80's Pop from Scritti Politti - absoloutely shite video and even worse clubbing clobber

I've been listening to a fair bit of old 80s pop whilst driving up and the M5 this weekend - all good stuff from my youth.

Great song, better clothing of the day, pretention levels at max power

Dreadful tache .....

Saturday, 30 July 2011

29/07/2011 N. Devon Moths

Ran 2 traps in the inlaws garden last night - the 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL combo and the 80W/11W Actinic/CFL combo trap. Excellent catch with a few expected goodies (or at least ones I don't/won't get in my garden). Total catch was 358 of 89 species, including a micro that is a British tick for me.

Cedestis subfasciella

0424 Bird-cherry Ermine (Yponomeuta evonymella) 1
0441 Paraswammerdamia nebulella 1
0443 Cedestis subfasciella 1
0647 Brown House Moth (Hofmannophila pseudospretella) 1
0787 Bryotropha terrella 2
0873 Blastobasis adustella 1
0938 Agapeta zoegana 1
0972 Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis heparana) 2
1038x Acleris laterana/comariana 1
1108 Lobesia abscisana 1
1207 Pine Leaf-mining Moth (Clavigesta purdeyi) 1
1288 Twenty-plume Moth (Alucita hexadactyla) 1
1293 Garden Grass-veneer (Chrysoteuchia culmella) 3
1304 Agriphila straminella 11
1305 Agriphila tristella 9
1376 Small Magpie (Eurrhypara hortulata) 3
1378 Phlyctaenia coronata 1
1390 Udea prunalis 5
1395 Rusty-dot Pearl (Udea ferrugalis) 4
1405 Mother of Pearl (Pleuroptya ruralis) 3
1524 Emmelina monodactyla 1
1640 Drinker (Euthrix potatoria) 3
1652 Peach Blossom (Thyatira batis) 1
1653 Buff Arches (Habrosyne pyritoides) 4
1690 Small Blood-vein (Scopula imitaria) 1
1702 Small Fan-footed Wave (Idaea biselata) 5
1708 Single-dotted Wave (Idaea dimidiata) 3
1713 Riband Wave (Idaea aversata) 9
1724 Red Twin-spot Carpet (Xanthorhoe spadicearia) 11
1738 Common Carpet (Epirrhoe alternata) 4
1758 Barred Straw (Eulithis pyraliata) 1
1759 Small Phoenix (Ecliptopera silaceata) 6
1777 July Highflyer (Hydriomena furcata) 3
1803 Small Rivulet (Perizoma alchemillata) 5
1830 Wormwood Pug (Eupithecia absinthiata) 2
1858 V-Pug (Chloroclystis v-ata) 2
1862 Double-striped Pug (Gymnoscelis rufifasciata) 1
1884 Magpie Moth (Abraxas grossulariata) 1
1906 Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata) 3
1917 Early Thorn (Selenia dentaria) 3
1921 Scalloped Oak (Crocallis elinguaria) 5
1922 Swallow-tailed Moth (Ourapteryx sambucaria) 1
1937 Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria) 5
1945 Brussels Lace (Cleorodes lichenaria) 2
1947 Engrailed (Ectropis bistortata) 1
1956 Common Wave (Cabera exanthemata) 1
1958 Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata) 4
1961 Light Emerald (Campaea margaritata) 1
1981 Poplar Hawk-moth (Laothoe populi) 1
1991 Elephant Hawk-moth (Deilephila elpenor) 1
1994 Buff-tip (Phalera bucephala) 1
2003 Pebble Prominent (Notodonta ziczac) 3
2011 Pale Prominent (Pterostoma palpina) 1
2037 Rosy Footman (Miltochrista miniata) 8
2044 Dingy Footman (Eilema griseola) 23
2047 Scarce Footman (Eilema complana) 1
2049 Buff Footman (Eilema depressa) 2
2050 Common Footman (Eilema lurideola) 18
2057 Garden Tiger (Arctia caja) 1
2061 Buff Ermine (Spilosoma luteum) 4
2064 Ruby Tiger (Phragmatobia fuliginosa) 1
2089 Heart and Dart (Agrotis exclamationis) 5
2092 Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta) 3
2102 Flame Shoulder (Ochropleura plecta) 12
2107 Large Yellow Underwing (Noctua pronuba) 35
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing (Noctua comes) 2
2110 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (Noctua fimbriata) 1
2111 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (Noctua janthe) 27
2128 Double Square-spot (Xestia triangulum) 1
2155 Dot Moth (Melanchra persicariae) 1
2160 Bright-line Brown-eye (Lacanobia oleracea) 3
2173 Lychnis (Hadena bicruris) 1
2193 Clay (Mythimna ferrago) 1
2198 Smoky Wainscot (Mythimna impura) 2
2284x Dark / Grey Dagger (Acronicta tridens/psi) 2
2289 Knot Grass (Acronicta rumicis) 4
2291 Coronet (Craniophora ligustri) 2
2318 Dun-bar (Cosmia trapezina) 2
2321 Dark Arches (Apamea monoglypha) 24
2338 Rufous Minor (Oligia versicolor) 3
2343x Common Rustic agg. (Mesapamea secalis agg.) 5
2360 Ear Moth (Amphipoea oculea) 1
2361 Rosy Rustic (Hydraecia micacea) 1
2381 Uncertain (Hoplodrina alsines) 5
2425 Nut-tree Tussock (Colocasia coryli) 3
2450 Spectacle (Abrostola tripartita) 1
2473 Beautiful Hook-tip (Laspeyria flexula) 1
2477 Snout (Hypena proboscidalis) 2
2489 Fan-foot (Zanclognatha tarsipennalis) 1

Brussels Lace

Rosy Footman

Garden Tiger - absolutely knackered, but really pleased to see it as I honestly can't remember the last time I saw one

Coronet

Ear Moth

Friday, 29 July 2011

Great Garden Ticks

A late post as I'm away from home at the moment - using a slow connection on a laptop without the right software. Before I left home though I grabbed a few shots which I'll post here now and replace with properly edited versions when I get home. The garden traps were pretty good last night - especially so as I picked up a completely unexpected garden macro tick, a British/County/Garden micro tick, and a really well marked tortrix that had me going but turned out to be not so exciting in the end.

First up the macro tick - a worn individual with a slightly deformed right forewing, but just about recognisable as a Barred Rivulet. Excellent.


And the micro tick - a plain and unimpressive individual which I am sure is Argyresthia laevigatella.


And the well marked tortrix - a Cnephasia longana. All of the individuals I have previously seen were of the plain buffy/yellow form.


Also worth mentioning there was a smart tiny Nepticulid that I got a shot of (just about) but haven't resolved the ID and may never be able to.



Here's a few others I snapped.

Batrachedra praeangusta

Eucosma campoliliana

Euzophera pinguis

Clay

Least Yellow Underwing

Orange Swift

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Half-arsed Garden Mothing Update (25/07 - 27/07)

Guilty! Once it all slowed down, so did I - this means that my MapMate records are a bit out of sync. I've just entered the records from the last three nights, but I've also got four generally rubbish garden lists from 11th, 18th, 21st and 23rd to enter. This means I can't quickly check what is new for the year etc. Still, I'll post the full lists anyway. The main thing to notice is that on all three nights the new 22W Synergetic / 18W CFL combo trap is both doing well and outperforming the 125W MV - excellent stuff.


25/07/2011
Total catch 153 of 56sp.
(125W MV 58 of 26, 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL Combo 95 of 44)


0441 Paraswammerdamia nebulella 2
0449 Ash Bud Moth (Prays fraxinella) 2
0644 Borkhausenia fuscescens 1
0647 Brown House Moth (Hofmannophila pseudospretella) 1
0787 Bryotropha terrella 2
0868 Helcystogramma rufescens 1
0870 Oegoconia quadripuncta 2
0873 Blastobasis adustella 1
0874 Blastobasis lacticolella 1
0972 Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis heparana) 1
0989 Timothy Tortrix (Aphelia paleana) 1
0994 Clepsis consimilana 1
1010 Red-barred Tortrix (Ditula angustiorana) 7
1036 Acleris forsskaleana 2
1048 Garden Rose Tortrix (Acleris variegana) 3
1178 Epiblema roborana 1
1293 Garden Grass-veneer (Chrysoteuchia culmella) 5
1294 Crambus pascuella 4
1304 Agriphila straminella 4
1305 Agriphila tristella 1
1338 Dipleurina lacustrata 4
1344 Eudonia mercurella 3
1378 Phlyctaenia coronata 1
1388 Udea lutealis 1
1390 Udea prunalis 1
1405 Mother of Pearl (Pleuroptya ruralis) 5
1424 Endotricha flammealis 5
1439 Trachycera advenella 3
1452 Phycita roborella 1
1513 White Plume Moth (Pterophorus pentadactyla) 1
1524 Emmelina monodactyla 1
1708 Single-dotted Wave (Idaea dimidiata) 3
1713 Riband Wave (Idaea aversata) 7
1728 Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata) 1
1732 Shaded Broad-bar (Scotopteryx chenopodiata) 1
1738 Common Carpet (Epirrhoe alternata) 1
1811 Slender Pug (Eupithecia tenuiata) 2
1884 Magpie Moth (Abraxas grossulariata) 1
1906 Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata) 1
1937 Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria) 2
2011 Pale Prominent (Pterostoma palpina) 1
2044 Dingy Footman (Eilema griseola) 1
2089 Heart and Dart (Agrotis exclamationis) 1
2092 Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta) 2
2107 Large Yellow Underwing (Noctua pronuba) 2
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing (Noctua comes) 4
2128 Double Square-spot (Xestia triangulum) 2
2155 Dot Moth (Melanchra persicariae) 1
2193 Clay (Mythimna ferrago) 1
2293 Marbled Beauty (Cryphia domestica) 2
2297 Copper Underwing (Amphipyra pyramidea) 1
2318 Dun-bar (Cosmia trapezina) 6
2321 Dark Arches (Apamea monoglypha) 9
2337x Marbled Minor agg. (Oligia strigilis agg.) 1
2343x Common Rustic agg. (Mesapamea secalis agg.) 30
2381 Uncertain (Hoplodrina alsines) 6


26/07/2011
Total catch 320 of 77sp.
(125W MV 146 of 51, 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL Combo 174 of 56)


0125 Emmetia marginea 1
0263 Apple Leaf Miner (Lyonetia clerkella) 3
0411 Argyresthia goedartella 2
0420 Cherry Fruit Moth (Argyresthia pruniella) 1
0441 Paraswammerdamia nebulella 1
0455 Ypsolopha scabrella 1
0462 Ypsolopha sequella 1
0642 Batia unitella 1
0647 Brown House Moth (Hofmannophila pseudospretella) 5
0648 White-shouldered House Moth (Endrosis sarcitrella) 2
0658 Carcina quercana 2
0787 Bryotropha terrella 2
0789 Bryotropha domestica 1
0866 Brachmia blandella 1
0868 Helcystogramma rufescens 2
0870 Oegoconia quadripuncta 2
0873 Blastobasis adustella 1
0874 Blastobasis lacticolella 2
0905 Blastodacna hellerella 2
0937 Agapeta hamana 2
0972 Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis heparana) 2
0977 Large Fruit-tree Tortrix (Archips podana) 1
1010 Red-barred Tortrix (Ditula angustiorana) 1
1036 Acleris forsskaleana 11
1038x Acleris laterana/comariana 2
1048 Garden Rose Tortrix (Acleris variegana) 7
1063 Celypha striana 2
1108 Lobesia abscisana 1
1138 Epinotia nisella 1
1178 Epiblema roborana 1
1205 Bud Moth (Spilonota ocellana) 5
1293 Garden Grass-veneer (Chrysoteuchia culmella) 12
1294 Crambus pascuella 6
1304 Agriphila straminella 7
1305 Agriphila tristella 1
1313 Catoptria pinella 1
1338 Dipleurina lacustrata 8
1344 Eudonia mercurella 3
1356 Garden Pebble (Evergestis forficalis) 1
1388 Udea lutealis 2
1390 Udea prunalis 4
1405 Mother of Pearl (Pleuroptya ruralis) 6
1413 Gold Triangle (Hypsopygia costalis) 1
1417 Meal Moth (Pyralis farinalis) 1
1424 Endotricha flammealis 8
1428 Bee Moth (Aphomia sociella) 1
1439 Trachycera advenella 9
1513 White Plume Moth (Pterophorus pentadactyla) 1
1713 Riband Wave (Idaea aversata) 24
1724 Red Twin-spot Carpet (Xanthorhoe spadicearia) 1
1728 Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata) 2
1738 Common Carpet (Epirrhoe alternata) 1
1811 Slender Pug (Eupithecia tenuiata) 4
1817 Foxglove Pug (Eupithecia pulchellata) 1
1825 Lime-speck Pug (Eupithecia centaureata) 1
1883 Yellow-barred Brindle (Acasis viretata) 2
1937 Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria) 7
1981 Poplar Hawk-moth (Laothoe populi) 1
2030 Yellow-tail (Euproctis similis) 1
2044 Dingy Footman (Eilema griseola) 2
2089 Heart and Dart (Agrotis exclamationis) 6
2092 Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta) 2
2102 Flame Shoulder (Ochropleura plecta) 1
2107 Large Yellow Underwing (Noctua pronuba) 2
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing (Noctua comes) 1
2110 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (Noctua fimbriata) 1
2111 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (Noctua janthe) 2
2128 Double Square-spot (Xestia triangulum) 1
2136 Gothic (Naenia typica) 1
2193 Clay (Mythimna ferrago) 7
2284x Dark Dagger / Grey Dagger (Acronicta tridens/psi) 1
2293 Marbled Beauty (Cryphia domestica) 1
2318 Dun-bar (Cosmia trapezina) 3
2321 Dark Arches (Apamea monoglypha) 40
2343x Common Rustic agg. (Mesapamea secalis agg.) 53
2381 Uncertain (Hoplodrina alsines) 9
2382 Rustic (Hoplodrina blanda) 1


27/07/2011
Total catch 322 of 72sp.
(125W MV 137 of 41, 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL Combo 185 of 57)


0263 Apple Leaf Miner (Lyonetia clerkella) 1
0420 Cherry Fruit Moth (Argyresthia pruniella) 2
0422 Argyresthia albistria 2
0441 Paraswammerdamia nebulella 4
0449 Ash Bud Moth (Prays fraxinella) 1
0462 Ypsolopha sequella 1
0464 Diamond-back Moth (Plutella xylostella) 1
0642 Batia unitella 1
0647 Brown House Moth (Hofmannophila pseudospretella) 1
0658 Carcina quercana 4
0787 Bryotropha terrella 2
0789 Bryotropha domestica 1
0866 Brachmia blandella 1
0868 Helcystogramma rufescens 1
0873 Blastobasis adustella 2
0878 Batrachedra praeangusta 1
0898 Limnaecia phragmitella 1
0905 Blastodacna hellerella 1
0937 Agapeta hamana 1
0972 Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix (Pandemis heparana) 4
0989 Timothy Tortrix (Aphelia paleana) 1
0994 Clepsis consimilana 1
1010 Red-barred Tortrix (Ditula angustiorana) 5
1036 Acleris forsskaleana 10
1038x Acleris laterana/comariana 1
1048 Garden Rose Tortrix (Acleris variegana) 4
1138 Epinotia nisella 2
1201 Eucosma cana 1
1205 Bud Moth (Spilonota ocellana) 1
1261 Codling Moth (Cydia pomonella) 1
1293 Garden Grass-veneer (Chrysoteuchia culmella) 10
1294 Crambus pascuella 2
1304 Agriphila straminella 12
1305 Agriphila tristella 3
1316 Catoptria falsella 1
1331 Water Veneer (Acentria ephemerella) 30
1338 Dipleurina lacustrata 2
1344 Eudonia mercurella 6
1356 Garden Pebble (Evergestis forficalis) 1
1388 Udea lutealis 1
1390 Udea prunalis 3
1405 Mother of Pearl (Pleuroptya ruralis) 5
1417 Meal Moth (Pyralis farinalis) 1
1424 Endotricha flammealis 29
1439 Trachycera advenella 13
1713 Riband Wave (Idaea aversata) 27
1724 Red Twin-spot Carpet (Xanthorhoe spadicearia) 1
1726 Large Twin-spot Carpet (Xanthorhoe quadrifasiata) 1
1738 Common Carpet (Epirrhoe alternata) 2
1803 Small Rivulet (Perizoma alchemillata) 1
1811 Slender Pug (Eupithecia tenuiata) 4
1883 Yellow-barred Brindle (Acasis viretata) 2
1906 Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata) 1
1937 Willow Beauty (Peribatodes rhomboidaria) 7
2031 White Satin (Leucoma salicis) 1
2050 Common Footman (Eilema lurideola) 1
2064 Ruby Tiger (Phragmatobia fuliginosa) 2
2092 Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta) 3
2107 Large Yellow Underwing (Noctua pronuba) 3
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing (Noctua comes) 6
2128 Double Square-spot (Xestia triangulum) 1
2155 Dot Moth (Melanchra persicariae) 2
2193 Clay (Mythimna ferrago) 1
2293 Marbled Beauty (Cryphia domestica) 2
2318 Dun-bar (Cosmia trapezina) 4
2321 Dark Arches (Apamea monoglypha) 20
2341 Cloaked Minor (Mesoligia furuncula) 2
2343x Common Rustic agg. (Mesapamea secalis agg.) 42
2381 Uncertain (Hoplodrina alsines) 4
2450 Spectacle (Abrostola tripartita) 1
2469 Herald (Scoliopteryx libatrix) 1
2489 Fan-foot (Zanclognatha tarsipennalis) 1

Herald

Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing

Ruby Tiger

Cloaked Minor

Water Veneer

Acleris laterana
CONFIRMED - gen. det. by Jon Clifton Jan 2012

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Using bins & photographing moths ....

.... two things that as a moth recorder and supposed birder I should be doing a lot more of than I have been doing lately! So, to buck the trend I headed over to Watermead CP South after work to add a couple of yearticks to the long-ignored City Yearlist. A juv Black Tern was still knocking about from yesterday and showing extremely well - a really smart bird. Also, a nice Little Egret was milling about in the far corner of Birstall Meadows, actually viewable from the weir at Watermead. Thanks to Dave for the heads-up on both of these. I'm a long way behind both Dave and John now, though there are a good few I could still catch up on and I could always resort to competitive stringing ........

When I got home, I promptly set up the old CoolPix and Macro Cool-light and snapped a few from the fridge - nothing too exciting but these are the first adult moths to feature on this blog for nearly two weeks!

Catoptria falsella

Epiblema foenella

Swallow Prominent

Straw Underwing

Single-dotted Wave

Monday, 25 July 2011

New Trap n Stuff

As most readers of this blog will have realised by now, the art of mothing involves trying a variety of methods and techniques - including different light sources in traps. I found a cheap source of some 22W Synergetic tubes which are used in some electric fly killer traps. They are supposedly better than standard actinic tubes as they have a dual peak output at 350nm and 540nm. Anyway, I bought a couple whilst Adrian sorted the control gear and utilised an existing vane concept for circular tubes. The most obvious thing about these lights is that they glow green rather than blue. Here is mine, coupled up with a standard CFL to give some extra visible light (all actinics seems to work better in combo with a standard tungsten or CFL light source).


How well it works is another matter - we'll see in a after a few outings. Meanwhile, here's some stuff from yesterday around Whetstone.

Teasel

St John's Wort - no idea which one!

Is this Zigzag Clover?

Tansy - I think

I think the above are both the same plant? What is it?

Gatekeeper in the garden yesterday

The controversial local wind farm near Gilmorton. Supposedly a total 8MW output sufficient for 5000 homes, though every time I've seen it the vanes are stationary even in the strongest wind. No idea whan it is going to be fully operational - was supposed to be June.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Prickly Lettuce = Small Ranunculus

Took the opporunity this afternoon to get out and about around the wider Whetstone area on my bike, looking for likely places where Prickly Lettuce might be growing with the intention of checking for Small Ranunculus larvae in a couple of weeks. Struck gold in all respects!

First up, I checked a small area of waste ground right in the middle of the village where a small industrial unit was demolished a couple of years ago but the area has been left to go wild. Very similar to the area in the last post but on a much smaller scale.


Here I found Prickly Lettuce, mainly plants that had already flowered - and unbelievably found a large number of larvae of various sizes from very early instars to pretty much full grown. At least 100 larvae found on this site.






After a quick detour along the old railway line (no Prickly Lettuce but a few other notable bits), I checked the big old car park that used to service the old GEC complex - now mainly a huge industrial wasteland. Lots of Prickly Lettuce in two separate areas.


All of the plants on this site were less advanced than the first, and notably I only found very small larvae or ova!




I'll leave it a week or so before collecting a couple of larvae to rear through and confirm, though I am as sure as I can be that all larvae and ova I found are Small Ranunculus. I also checked two other industrial estates but no Prickly Lettuce found.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Wasted

When it comes to mothing, there are various highly productive habitats that are more than worth visiting. Ancient woodland, moorland, coastal scrub and dunes, fenland and boggy marshes, reedbeds, chalk downs, limestone grasslands, industrial wasteland .... Eh?

Yes - industrial wasteland. In fact, transitional habitats and generally unloved bits of derelict land can be brilliant places for wildlife and inverts generally, and of course moths. One of my favourite sites locally over the last few years is an old quarry, which became landfill, got capped and is now just completely wild.



And so, just before dusk last night I met up with Adrian on the now derelict and abandoned site of an old factory. Adrian had checked it out a week or so ago, netted a Small Ranunculus whilst there and noted some relatively intersting plants from a VC55 mothing perspective. The site was a bloody eyesore, and bloody brilliant. You'd be forgiven for thinking that it was actually part of a war torn city ....



Concrete slabs, heaps of rubble and crap, but the key to our interest was the masses of buddleia, mullein, mugwort, willowherbs, and most importantly, wormwood. The intention was to have a good look around, casually net anything flying, and run a trap for an hour or so whilst we did that.





Despite the generally casual approach, we managed to net/trap c20 species including a few nice micros like Catoptria falsella, Epiblema foenella and Eucosma conterminana. No sign of the hoped for Wormwood, though it will certainly be worth a return visit or two to check for larvae which is the best way to record this species. Also a fair bit of Great Lettuce on the site which is not doubt hosting Small Ranunculus.


Great Mullein

Too late for any Mullein larvae, though plenty of evidence that they are on site

Wormwood - fancy an Absinthe


Purple Toadflax

Tall Meliot

Common Evening Primrose