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

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Garden Trap Catches

Struggling to keep up with blogging this year, and not just on here. Posted a big 1000 in 1km square update yesterday which was the first for a couple of weeks, and likewise updated the Garden Moth Challenge.

I haven't posted daily updates from the garden traps, not that they've run everyday. The early part of last week was by far the best so far this year, with lots of NFY moths and quite a few other bits. Since getting the Synergetic trap back in use it has outperformed the 125W MV on every outing except last night - and that's mainly down to the wind gusting through the garden right into the trap path whereas the MV is a little more sheltered. The opposite may be having an effect on calmer nights but the 80W actinic did not routinely out-do the MV, and in particular when the conditions were a little better (eg 7th and 20th May) the MV completely outclassed it. All in all I'd have to say that the Synergetic trap has got to be the trap of choice for the garden - at least for the complimentary trap to the 125W MV (can't see me ever being brave enough to ditch one of those).

Here's a side-by-side comparison of the 125MV versus the 80W actinic and 22W Synergetic on the nights they've been run this year (actinic only running in early season):

17th - 19th June by far the best period so far this year with 41 species added to the garden yearlist, torrential rain in the afternoon and early evening on 20th so no trapping, and very blustery with some rain last night. Hopefully things will pick up again soon.

Garden tick on the 13th, Cydia ulicetana (326th micro, 629th moth).

Monday, 10 June 2013


The Natural World version 1
a mesmerising, beautiful and truly spectacular place where everything is awesome

Like the rich colours, intricate body markings and rorschach patterning on the head of this Green Brindled Crescent caterpillar that I found on hawthorn on 26/05/2013 and collected to rear.

The Natural World version 2
a despicable, ugly and truly disgusting place where everything is awful

Like the same caterpillar as above after it has been cruelly devoured alive from the inside by these parasitic braconid wasp larvae which have burst out alien-stylie today and pupated around the still-alive hole-riddled host (though not alive for much longer I expect).

In truth of course beauty can only exist if there is horror to measure it against, and either way it's all relative - I expect that the tiny wasps that will emerge will be as stunningly beautiful in their own way as their larval habits are grossly disgusting.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

I've been expecting you .....

Really pleased with this one - an overdue garden macro tick in two ways.

Orange Footman

My last garden macro tick was a Large Wainscot back on 30th September 2011 (way back when moths used to regularly come to garden traps, before the great moth depression started in 2012 .....). It is the 303rd macro on the garden list, and after the two Coleophorids added a couple of weeks ago it is the 628th moth on the garden list.

Also, I was one of the group that added this species to the VC55 list way back in May 2003 - a tatty individual that was not helped by being virtually peeled off of the sole of my shoe whilst we inspected traps at Pickworth Great Wood. That one preceded a dramatic and widespread arrival across the county, and over the next couple of years everyone else was starting to see it in their gardens and it became (and still is) pretty much standard fare when out and about every year. I've therefore been waiting for this one to turn up for the best part of a decade.

Now then, where's my Nut-tree Tussock, Rosy Footman, Fern, Small Waved Umber ......

Monday, 3 June 2013

Recent Garden Mothing

The moth traps have been out for the last three nights (after a lengthy dormant spell in late May again!). I've also got the synergetic running again at long last, almost a year on from when it got knackered by Nichola during a bizarre shed incident. Catches still poor though overall, though garden leps. yearlist now up to 86.

Total catch 49 of 23sp.
(125W MV 17 of 13sp., 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL combo 32 of 16sp.)
0409a  Argyresthia trifasciata  3 (NFY)
0464  Diamond-back Moth (Plutella xylostella)  1 (NFY)
0602  Elachista apicipunctella  1
0648  White-shouldered House Moth (Endrosis sarcitrella)  1
0649  Esperia sulphurella  2
0892  Mompha subbistrigella  1
0986  Syndemis musculana  2
1356  Garden Pebble (Evergestis forficalis)  1 (NFY)
1648  Pebble Hook-tip (Drepana falcataria)  1 (NFY)
1654  Figure of Eighty (Tethea ocularis octogesimea)  1 (NFY)
1728  Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata)  4
1776  Green Carpet (Colostygia pectinataria)  5
1778  May Highflyer (Hydriomena impluviata)  1 (NFY)
1817  Foxglove Pug (Eupithecia pulchellata)  1
1819  Mottled Pug (Eupithecia exiguata)  1
1834  Common Pug (Eupithecia vulgata)  5
1906  Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata)  11
1920  Scalloped Hazel (Odontopera bidentata)  2
1955  Common White Wave (Cabera pusaria)  1 (NFY)
1958  Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata)  1 (NFY)
1981  Poplar Hawk-moth (Laothoe populi)  1 (NFY)
2092  Shuttle-shaped Dart (Agrotis puta)  1
2334  Rustic Shoulder-knot (Apamea sordens)  1 (NFY)

Poplar Hawk-moth

Diamond-back Moth

Common White Wave

Total catch 20 of 12sp.
(125W MV 7 of 5sp., 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL combo 13 of 10sp.)
0602  Elachista apicipunctella  1
0649  Esperia sulphurella  1
0822  Scrobipalpa acuminatella  1
1728  Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata)  1
1776  Green Carpet (Colostygia pectinataria)  4
1778  May Highflyer (Hydriomena impluviata)  1
1819  Mottled Pug (Eupithecia exiguata)  1
1834  Common Pug (Eupithecia vulgata)  3
1906  Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata)  2
1920  Scalloped Hazel (Odontopera bidentata)  3
1981  Poplar Hawk-moth (Laothoe populi)  1
2334  Rustic Shoulder-knot (Apamea sordens)  1

Total catch 39 of 17sp.
(125W MV 11 of 6sp., 22W/18W Synergetic/CFL combo 28 of 16sp.)
0266  Bucculatrix nigricomella  1 (NFY)
0409a  Argyresthia trifasciata  2
0464  Diamond-back Moth (Plutella xylostella)  1
0648  White-shouldered House Moth (Endrosis sarcitrella)  1
0779  Bryotropha affinis  1 (NFY)
1428  Bee Moth (Aphomia sociella)  1 (NFY)
1728  Garden Carpet (Xanthorhoe fluctuata)  2
1776  Green Carpet (Colostygia pectinataria)  8
1778  May Highflyer (Hydriomena impluviata)  3
1808  Sandy Carpet (Perizoma flavofasciata)  1 (NFY)
1817  Foxglove Pug (Eupithecia pulchellata)  1
1819  Mottled Pug (Eupithecia exiguata)  1
1834  Common Pug (Eupithecia vulgata)  4
1906  Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata)  5
1920  Scalloped Hazel (Odontopera bidentata)  4
1958  Clouded Silver (Lomographa temerata)  2
2028  Pale Tussock (Calliteara pudibunda)  1 (NFY)

Pale Tussock