June 2014

 

Monday 30th June

A Barn Owl over Eastgate Street in North Elmham was as close to the new house as I've seen Barn Owl to the old house in Bawdeswell - I wonder if I'll have any better luck actually getting it on the new house list, something I never managed to do at Bawdeswell. The same short drive back to Bawdeswell also produced a Little Owl on Foxley Road in Bawdeswell - perhaps one of the birds I sometimes hear calling from my house but haven't managed to see from the house yet.

Once home a few moths appeared, the best of which were 2 Hawthorn Ermels Paraswammerdamia nebulella, 3 Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella, Golden Lance-wing Epermenia chaerophyllella, 2-3 Flax Tortrices Cnephasia asseclana, Dusky Pearl Udea prunalis, 2 Swallow-tailed Moths, Privet Hawkmoth, Elephant Hawkmoth and Buff-tip.

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Privet Hawkmoth, Bawdeswell, 30th June

 

Sunday 29th June

When you go out to moth events you often find little moths sneak into your car as you're packing away. This morning I got into the car and the first thing I noticed was a Scoparine (turned out to be Meadow Grey Scoparia pyralella) on the dashboard. Bizarrely it was only after I saw the tiny Scoparia that I clocked a massive Privet Hawkmoth right next to it and staring me in the face! I suppose the worn pale Scoparia contasted against the dark grey dashboard better than the Hawkmoth!

Not many moths this evening - a couple of Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella and another Elephant Hawkmoth were the best.

 

Saturday 28th June

A Norfolk Moth Survey event at Grime's Graves coincided with good weather for moths and so I set off with high hopes. There are lots of Breckland specialities that I've never seen so I stood a good chance of seeing several new moths. Well that started even before I got there as I picked up Dave in Dereham en route and he'd kept back a splendid Bordered Beauty from the previous evening along with a micro that turned out to be Thicket Knot-horn Acrobasis suavella - both species I had never seen before.

Shortly after arriving at Grime's Graves the first of several Oblique Striped appeared - one of the few Breckland specials I had seen before. Then a couple of species I hadn't seen before were netted: White-shouldered Sober Sophronia semicostella and Pine Marble Piniphila bifasciana. A good start before any of the lights were on! There were several of us with lights, covering a wide area, and with good numbers of moths at all of them there wasn't time for us to get round and go through all of them. But that didn't matter as although we may have missed the most striking moth of the night (Cream-spot Tiger), we did see plenty of excellent moths, including lots that I had either never seen or rarely seen before. Among the new ones were Hawthorn Moth Scythropia crataegella (a worn individual I didn't identify until I got home), Small Crest Anarsia spartiella, Golden Pearl Anania verbascalis, Fox Moth (several of these, including an egg-laying female), Grass Emerald, Brown Scallop (3), Peacock Moth (2), Broom Moth (at least 5), Reddish Light Arches (several, and one that was completely off my radar - had never heard of it before) and Mere Wainscot. A couple of others may prove to be new if they get confirmed (update December - indeed, a Pine Ermel Exoteleia dodecella has now been confirmed, would have been new though I've seen it since).

Other moths I'd only seen occasionally before, some of which were Breckland specials while others are more widespread, included Knapweed Conch Agapeta zoegana, Marbled Piercer Cydia splendana, at least 4 Powdered Knot-horns Delplanqueia dilutella, Plain Wave, 3 Sharp-angled Carpets, lots of Shaded Pugs, Lesser Pearl Sitochroa verticalis, Satin Beauty, Barred Red, several Small Elephant Hawkmoths, Round-winged Muslin, 3 Four-dotted Footmen, Clouded Buff, 2 Lunar Yellow Underwings, lots of Shears and Blackneck.

Also noteworthy were Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, Birch Marble Apotomis betulana, Common Cloaked Shoot Gypsonoma dealbana, Barred Grass-veneers Agriphila inquinitella, Pearl Grass-veneer Catoptria pinella, Little Grass-veneer Platytes cerussella, Long-winged Pearl Anania lancealis, Heather Knot-horn Pempelia palumbella, Large Emerald, 2 Barred Straws, 3 Toadflax Pugs, Peppered Moth, Bordered White, 2 Privet Hawkmoths, 2 Pine Hawkmoths, 2 Lime Hawkmoths, Pebble Prominent, 3 Coxcomb Prominents, Buff-tip, Lobster Moth, several Scarce Footmen, Buff Footman, Lesser Yellow Underwing, 4 True Lover's Knots, 3 Brown-line Bright-eyes, lots of Shoulder-striped Wainscots, Poplar Grey, Rustic, Beautiful Golden Y and Beautiful Hook-tip.

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Bordered Beauty (left) and Thicket Knot-horn Acrobasis suavella (right), Dereham, 28th June

 

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Grass Emerald (left) and Fox Moth (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Oblique Stripeds, Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Small Elephant Hawkmoth (left) and Shears (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Shaded Pug (left) and Brown Scallop (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Four-dotted Footmen, Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Reddish Light Arches (left) and Broom Moth (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Peacock Moth, Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Large Emerald (left) and Sharp-angled Carpet (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Shoulder-striped Wainscots, Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Mere Wainscot (left) and Pine Hawkmoth (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Satin Beauty (left) and Lime Hawkmoth (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Clouded Buff (left) and Pine Marble Piniphila bifasciana (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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White-shouldered Sober Sophronia semicostella (left) and Powdered Knot-horn Delplanqueia dilutella (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

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Common Cloaked Shoot Gypsonoma dealbana (left) and Hawthorn Moth Scythropia crataegella (right), Grime's Graves, 28th June

 

Friday 27th June

Obscure Groundling Bryotropha similis was new for the year tonight. Before that this whacky Blackbird was the highlight of my lunch break.

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leucistic Blackbird, West Raynham, 27th June

 

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Obscure Groundling Bryotropha similis, Bawdeswell, 27th June

 

Thursday 26th June

At the new house this evening 2 separate Common Terns and a noisy group of 3 Oystercatchers flew over - never had Common Tern in 7.5 years at Bawdeswell and only heard Oystercatcher once I think, so that's a good start for the new house bird list! Also a snail-eating fly, Tetanocera fuscinervis, which I've not identified before.

Back at Bawdeswell I had a new moth, Brown-barred Tortrix Epagoge grotiana. A second Tortrix isn't recorded from many places in Norfolk, but turns up here quite regularly - Rose Tortrix Archips rosana. Tortricids really stole the show tonight as the only other moths worth mentioning were Holly Tortrix Rhopobota naevana (not a well-marked Epinotia abbreviana as I had it down for a bit) and a new-for-the-year Timothy Tortrix Aphelia paleana.

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Brown-barred Tortrix Epagoge grotiana (left) and Rose Tortrix Archips rosana (right), Bawdeswell, 26th June

 

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Holly Tortrix Rhopobota naevana, Bawdeswell, 26th June

 

Wednesday 25th June

A much better night for moths. A male Ghost Moth was the best although Short-cloaked Moth was more unusual, being only my third here. Also another Elephant Hawkmoth and new for the year were Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, Small Fan-footed Wave and Smoky Wainscot. Other notables were 2 Hawthorn Ermels Paraswammerdamia nebulella, probable Meadow Neb Metzneria metzneriella and Hoary Bell Eucosma cana.

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Ghost Moth (left) and Short-cloaked Moth (right), Bawdeswell, 25th June

 

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Hoary Bell Eucosma cana (left) and Marbled Orchard Tortrix Hedya nubiferana (right), Bawdeswell, 25th June

 

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Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, Bawdeswell, 25th June

 

Tuesday 24th June

Went back to work today, albeit not for long, for the first time since my frozen shoulder started. Will be going back properly(ish) from Thursday if the doctor gives the ok. Not that it's completely better, but it's much improved and I can manage the drive ok now.

Also completed the purchase of a new house today, in North Elmham. We've not sold the old one yet which in some ways is very helpful - my shoulder is in no way fit enough for me to be moving house yet! Paying two mortgages is not helpful however, so if you fancy buying a lovely 2-bed house in Bawdeswell, or even just renting it, please get in touch! We hope to move some time over the next 1-3 months depending on progress with the house sale or getting tennants in. Visited the new house to collect the keys this evening, also started the house moth list off with Little Grey Eudonia lacustrata. Very few moths at Bawdeswell this evening.

 

Monday 23rd June

Dusky Pearl Udea prunalis and Rosy Tabby Endotricha flammealis were new for the year this evening.

 

Sunday 22nd June

Dave gave me a lift up to Beeston Common today, picking up Keiran en route where we had a look at what he'd left in his moth trap. Highlights were Bordered Pug, a species I've only seen a couple of times before, Grey Pug, Lobster Moth, Varied Coronet and Rustic. Beeston Common produced what Dave was hoping for, Norfolk's only Lesser Butterfly Orchid. Also Marsh Fragrant Orchid and Marsh Helleborines, and a Keeled Skimmer. The most obvious moth was Five-spotted Burnet, several of which were seen. I think a worn Pug may prove to be Valerian Pug and Orange-spot Piercer Pammene aurana was good. Also new for the year were 3 Rush Marbles Bactra lancealana and Hoary Bell Eucosma cana.

Kelling Water Meadow produced at least 3 Red-veined Darters (possibly more), the first time I've got round to seeing this species in Norfolk. Other dragonflies included Emperor and Broad-bodied Chaser. We were going to head to Felbrigg for the Lesser Emperor next but being a bit time-limited and seeing it was clouding over we decided to give that a miss. Instead Dave and I stopped at Alderford Common which was nearer home, seen 2 Red Kites over the A1067 at Twyford en route. Alderford produced some more orchids for Dave including a few Bee Orchids. Odonata were represented by Banded Demoiselle and Black-tailed Skimmer.

I netted a few interesting moths including my first ever Powdered Knot-horn Delplanqueia dilutella. That species was recorded from one site in Norfolk last year, and otherwise not since 2005. It's only ever been recorded from a few sites in Norfolk, but Alderford was already among them. One moth that hadn't been recorded in this area before was our second Orange-spot Piercer Pammene aurana of the day. Other noteworthy records were Holly Tortrix Rhopobota naevana, 8 + Brown Plumes Stenoptilia pterodactyla and Lesser Cream Wave, all new for the year. A couple of beetles were new for me (not difficult) but a Sawfly was potentially more interesting. I think the ID must be correct as it's highly distinctive, but the range map for Tenthredo livida in the new insects book doesn't show it present in Norfolk (at least not north/central Norfolk). Perhaps an error, or maybe more likely just a reflection on how few people record sawflies - I doubt if it is genuinely rare?

I didn't put the MV light on tonight but with just the normal lights on I got 33 species of moth. Highlights were Bird-cherry Ermine Yponomeuta evonymella (first for the year and a species I hadn't seen here until last year), Burdock Neb Metzneria lappella (first for the year), 2 Hawthorn Cosmets Blastodacna hellerella, Gold Triangle Hypsopygia costalis and Swallow-tailed Moth.

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Bordered Pug, Holt, 22nd June

 

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Lesser Butterfly Orchid, Beeston Common, 22nd June

 

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Marsh Fragrant Orchid (left) and Marsh Helleborine (right), Beeston Common, 22nd June

 

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Orange-spot Piercer Pammene aurana (left) and presumed Five-spot Burnet (right), Beeston Common, 22nd June

 

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Red-veined Darters, Kelling, 22nd June

 

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Black-tailed Skimmer (left) and Emperor (right), Kelling, 22nd June

 

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Powdered Knot-horn Delplanqueia dilutella (left) and Holly Tortrix Rhopobota naevana (right), Alderford Common, 22nd June

 

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Chrysolina polita (left) and Clay-coloured Weevil (right), Alderford Common, 22nd June

 

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Bee Orchid (left) and Tenthredo livida (right), Alderford Common, 22nd June

 

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Bird-cherry Ermine Yponomeuta evonymella (left) and probable Burdock Neb Metzneria lappella (right), Bawdeswell, 22nd June - not the most obvious lappella but I'm favouring that over metzneriella - let me know what you think!

 

Saturday 21st June

Dave gave me a lift to Holt Country Park today where we easily located at least 3 Broad-bordered Bee Hawkmoths. A stroll round to see some fairly unimpressive Birdsnest Orchids produced one or two much more impressive White Admirals, the best views I've had of these for years, if not ever. On the Lowes there were plenty of Keeled Skimmers and among the moths were Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata and Heather Knot-horn Pempelia palumbella. Nearby we saw a couple of Woodlarks before heading home.

In the evening a group of us visited Suffield Community Woodland where quite a few members of the local community turned up to see some moths. It was much colder than expected which limited the number of moths on show but it wasn't a bad night in the end - in fact it was really nice to see so many people genuinely interested in the moths despite the cold. There was one new moth for me, Little Emerald, though I didn't get a great view of it as it sat upside down in someone's pot. Other highlights were Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana, my second ever Ochreous Pearl Anania crocealis, 2 Ghost Moths (including a dancing male), 2 Privet Hawkmoths, 2 Elephant Hawkmoths, Light Arches, Rustic and Green Silver-lines. In addition Barred Marble Celypha striana, 2 Barred Straws, Light Arches and Rustic were new for the year. It was a shame that the Privet Hawks turned up as we were packing up and after most of the public had left - I'm sure they would have liked to see them!

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Broad-bordered Bee Hawkmoth, Holt Country Park, 21st June

 

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White Admiral, Holt Country Park, 21st June

 

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White Admiral (left) and Sicus ferrugineus (right), Holt Country Park, 21st June - a fly tick!

 

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Volucella bombylans, Holt Country Park (left) and Heather Knot-horn Pempelia palumbella, Holt Lowes (right), 21st June

 

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Common Spotted Orchids, Holt Lowes, 21st June

 

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Keeled Skimmer, Holt Lowes, 21st June

 

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Green Silver-lines (left) and Ochreous Pearl Anania crocealis (right), Suffield Community Woodland, 21st June

 

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Privet Hawkmoth, Suffield Community Woodland, 21st June

 

Friday 20th June

A very much better night, easily the best this week. At least 58 species despite there being very few of the smaller micros. Having said that it was a smallish micro that provided my only completely new species: Black-headed Conch Cochylis atricapitana - a belated lifer as it's supposed to be quite common. Next best was my second ever, and first since 2010, Pretty Chalk Carpet. Yellow Satin Veneer Crambus perlella, Dot Moth and 2 Clays were new for the year. Other noteworthy or just pretty records were Beautiful Plume Amblyptilia acanthadactyla, Peach Blossom, Barred Yellow, both Toadflax Pug and Foxglove Pug, Green Pug, Clouded Border, Swallow-tailed Moth, 2 Elephant Hawkmoths, Cinnabar, Lychnis, 2 Burnished Brasses and 2 Beautiful Hook-tips.

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Peach Blossom (left) and Pretty Chalk Carpet (right), Bawdeswell, 20th June

 

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Dot Moth (left) and Spectacle (right), Bawdeswell, 20th June

 

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Beautiful Hook-tip (left) and Beautiful Plume Amblyptilia acanthadactyla (right), Bawdeswell, 20th June

 

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Yellow Satin Veneer Crambus perlella (left) and Black-headed Conch Cochylis atricapitana (right), Bawdeswell, 20th June

 

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Foxglove Pug (left) and Toadflax Pug (right), Bawdeswell, 20th June

 

Thursday 19th June

A poor evening for moths - the highlights might not have even got a mention on a busier night: 2 Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella, Marbled Orchard Tortrix Hedya nubiferana and Burnished Brass.

 

Wednesday 18th June

Clear skies meant a drop in temperatures making some people record even fewer moths tonight compared to recent evenings. For me though my window faces north and I'm more impacted by a north wind than the clear skies, so with the wind having fallen this evening I did slightly better. Not much, and it was mainly sturdy types of species (no micros at all), but enough to make it worthwhile. The highlight was my first Barred Yellow of the year, always one of my favourite moths. Other nice species included Swallow-tailed Moth, Elephant Hawkmoth, 3 Buff Ermines, Small Angle Shades and Burnished Brass.

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Barred Yellow (left) and Burnished Brass (right), Bawdeswell, 18th June

 

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Small Angle Shades (left) and Buff Ermine (right), Bawdeswell, 18th June

 

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Elipsocus hyelinus, Bawdeswell, 18th June - another Psocid lifer bringing my Barkfly list up to 3... only another 65 British species to go!

 

Tuesday 17th June

Not exactly heaving again tonight, though a few more moths than yesterday. Marbled Orchard Tortrix Hedya nubiferana was new for the year and it was nice to find another Elephant clinging to the side of my bed...

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Elephant Hawkmoth, Bawdeswell, 17th June

 

Monday 16th June

The weather has gone proper rubbish for moths (or anything else). Consequently the worst night for ages but still two worth mentioning. One was another Buff-tip, one of my favourite moths, and the other was my first Meadow Grey Scoparia pyralella for the year.

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Buff-tip (left) and Meadow Grey Scoparia pyralella (right), Bawdeswell, 16th June

 

Sunday 15th June

Peach Blossom was the only new moth for the year tonight, but that's one that's always a delight to see. Equally eye-catching were Elephant Hawkmoth and Beautiful Golden Y but there were fewer moths tonight than there have been for quite a while.

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Elephant Hawkmoth, Bawdeswell, 15th June

 

Saturday 14th June

A change in weather meant for fewer moths tonight but there were a couple of nice ones anyway. Best was my first Broad-barred White - always nice to see a new species, but especially when it's as attractive as that! A Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana was also very fine and a Nutmeg was new for the year.

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Broad-barred White, Bawdeswell, 14th June

 

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Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana (left) and Nutmeg (right), Bawdeswell, 14th June

 

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Flame, Bawdeswell, 14th June - one of 10

 

Friday 13th June

A fairly good evening for moths with several new for the year including a few that I don't see very often. Marsh Grey Eudonia pallida was my second ever, Large Ivy Tortrix Lozotaenia forsterana my third and Sycamore was my first since 2011. Other firsts for the year were Hawthorn Ermel Paraswammerdamia nebulella, 2 Hawthorn Cosmets Blastodacna hellerella, Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis heparana, Garden Grass-veneer Chrysoteuchia culmella, Dwarf Cream Wave, Yellow Shell and Beautiful Hook-tip. There were 54 species in all and others worth mentioning were 3 False Cacao Moths Ephestia unicolorella, 2 Green Pugs, 2 Swallow-tailed Moths and Pale Mottled Willow.

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Marsh Grey Eudonia pallida (left) and Hawthorn Cosmet Blastodacna hellerella (right), Bawdeswell, 13th June

 

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Large Ivy Tortrix Lozotaenia forsterana (left) and Sycamore (right), Bawdeswell, 13th June

 

Thursday 12th June

Two new insects tonight, neither of them moths. I went through all my Bumble Bee photos a while back and tried to put a name to them - one common species that I hadn't photographed was Early Bumble Bee. I don't normally appreciate Bees (and other stinging insects) entering my house but as tonight's was an Early Bumble Bee I didn't mind so much - quite a pretty little thing really! Another group of insects that seem to be readily identifiable with a hand lens (at least some of them), thanks to an excellent website from the National Barkfly Recording Scheme, is the Barkflies (Psocids). Tonight's was one of the commonest species, but one I'd not identified before: Graphopsocus cruciatus.

Among the moths was a Brown Silver-line, possibly the species I have recorded most away from home (at least 14 different sites, often in abundance) without seeing any at home. Tonight it finally made it on to the house list, number 539. Other goodies included Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata, my first Swallow-tailed Moth of the year and another anything-but-plain Plain Golden Y. Green Pug was nice, 10 Fan-foots was a record and Four-spotted or Scarce Obscure Oegoconia quadripuncta/deauratella was new for the year.

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Early Bumble Bee (left) and the Barkfly Graphopsocus cruciatus (right), Bawdeswell, 12th June

 

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Swallow-tailed Moth (left) and Plain Golden Y (right), Bawdeswell, 12th June

 

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Green Pug (left) and Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata (right), Bawdeswell, 12th June

 

Wednesday 11th June

Lots of moths and plenty of variety with nearly 50 species but nothing very extraordinary among them. 2 Barred Fruit-tree Tortrices Pandemis cerasana was the best record for here - I've only had 4 singles before although I often get tonnes of them when I go elsewhere. Another Buff-tipped Marble Hedya ochroleucana was nice, as was a Small China-mark Cataclysta lemnata. Probably the scarcest moth was Plain Conch Phtheochroa inopiana but I get them here fairly regularly (only in July before). It's been a while since I last saw a Scorched Carpet so I wonder if tonight's was the start of the second generation? Two other common moths were new for the year: Common Emerald and Single-dotted Wave.

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Blood-vein (left) and Small China-mark Cataclysta lemnata (right), Bawdeswell, 11th June

 

Tuesday 10th June

An exciting haul of moths at home this evening! A Plain Golden Y was my second ever and first since 2009, a much brighter individual than the previous one. Equally nice, and only my third record at home, was a Buff-tip.

One moth was a struggle to put a name to.  It was quite similar to a brown form of Rosy Tabby Endotricha flammealis, an abundant moth here in July and early August, but it differed in a number of ways.  The irregular shape of the rear of the wing was more extreme (recalling Nettle-tap a little), it had long palps, the markings differed slightly and it had a distinctive head-down posture like Golden-brown Tubic Crassa (Batia) unitella. I could find nothing like it in the books or on an initial online search.  A more extensive online search of Endotricha species and other Pyralids failed to turn up anything so I turned my attention to Crambids, noting some similarity to Dark Marbled Tabby Duponchelia fovealis.  Finally I found it: it was Eastern Black Tabby Diplopseustis perieresalisUK Moths only mentions two records, one from Scilly in 2001 and one from Devon in 2007.  HantsMoths mentions one in Hampshire in 2010 but I have no idea if there are other recent UK records.  It’s evidently an adventive species originating in Asia and Australasia although the Scilly record may possibly have been a migrant from the Canaries where a population seems to have become established.  That doesn’t seem so likely for mine – I guess it’s more likely to have migrated from the garden centre half a mile away! I found an interesting article about its arrival in the Western Palaearctic here

Other highlights included Apple Leaf Miner Lyonetia clerkella - my second here - and my third Buff-tipped Marble Hedya ochroleucana. Another Grey Pug was noteworthy and 8 Mottled Beauties was my highest count here. Bramble Shoot Moth Notocelia uddmanniana, Small Blood-vein and 2 Dark Arches were new for the year.

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Buff-tip (left) and Plain Golden Y (right), Bawdeswell, 10th June

 

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Eastern Black Tabby Diplopseustis perieresalis, Bawdeswell, 10th June - the first for Norfolk!!

 

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Buff-tipped Marble Hedya ochroleucana (left) and Apple Leaf Miner Lyonetia clerkella (right), Bawdeswell, 10th June

 

Monday 9th June

Quite a good evening for moths with two new species for the house, Meadow Neb Metzneria metzneriella and Olive Pearl Udea olivalis. The latter I've seen in good numbers elsewhere but the former was only my second anywhere. Also new for the year were Large Brindled Clothes Moth Triaxomera parasitella, 2 Dark Groundlings Bryotropha affinis, Gold Triangle Hypsopygia costalis, Small Rivulet, Grey Pug, 2 Large Yellow Underwings and 2 Mottled Rustics.

Other goodies included another Beautiful Golden Y while 4 Yellow-spot Tortrices Pseudargyrotoza conwagana helped secure this year as far and away the best yet for this attractive little species. Another record count came from 7 Cypress Tip Moths Argyresthia cupressella.

Update December: turns out I was right to doubt my tentative ID of Southern Case-bearer Coleophora badiipennella - the plain wings had me fooled. It was in fact Grey Rush Case-bearer Coleophora glaucicolella, my second record (thanks Jon).

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Tree Bumblebee, Bawdeswell, 9th June - the first time I've noticed this newly-British species in my house

 

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Large Brindled Clothes Moth Triaxomera parasitella (left) and Gold Triangle Hypsopigia costalis (right), Bawdeswell, 9th June

 

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Green Pug (left) and Grey Pug (right), Bawdeswell, 9th June

 

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Meadow Neb Metzneria metzneriella (left) and Grey Rush Case-bearer Coleophora glaucicolella (right), Bawdeswell, 9th June - I'd been thrown by the Coleophora's very plain looking wings with no apparent paler streaks except along the costa, but Jon has gen detted it and it's glaucicolella

 

Sunday 8th June

Nothing remarkable among tonight's moths except for another Dark Spectacle. I'm now on 4 Ingrailed Clays for the year which is good for a species I don't normally see here very often; Small Angled Shades (my 4th here this year tonight as well) also look like they're heading for a record year.

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Ingrailed Clay (left) and Small Angle Shades (right), Bawdeswell, 8th June - why do Small Angle Shades always look so much less impressive in photos than they do in life?

 

Saturday 7th June

Sylvia warblers are among my favourite birds and Spectacled Warbler is particularly special for me being the first first-for-Britain that I ever saw and I think the only species for which I've seen both the first and second UK records, albeit a very long time ago now. There had never been a Spectacled Warbler available for twitchers in Norfolk until this week but on Monday one was discovered singing and building a nest (!) at my favourite stomping grounds, Burnham Overy. Normally I would have been straight up there after work, like hundreds of other birders were this week. All week I have been inundated with reports of how well it's been showing and what an amazing bird it is, usually complete with stunning photos just to prove the point. And all week I've been at home with a frozen shoulder, working from home but not able to drive far. I had an offer of a lift up, but it was too early in the afternoon while I was still working so unable to take up the offer. As the week progressed the weather started to change and I was sure it would disappear before I could get up there. The painkillers helped the shoulder but they didn't help the tension and suspense as I desperately hoped I would find a way of getting up there before it realised that no matter how loudly it sung its head off there wasn't any point in building a nest at Burnham Overy when the nearest female was in the Camargue.

Today my brother came up from Kent in the hope of seeing it and kindly picked me up en route, and thankfully it was still there! A Red Kite flew over New Holkham on the way and as we walked down to the crowd a Spoonbill flew over. We reached the crowd to find that the Spectacled Warbler was nest-building in the sueda just a few feet in front of where we were standing. What a relief!! And what a superb little bird! It was in a routine and would take nest material into the bush then emerge a short while later, perch out in the open for a few seconds while giving a quick burst of song and then head off to one of two area where it would sing quickly and gather nest material before coming back. It was never in view for long, but plenty long enough to get a good look or grab a few photos. I heard and then saw a couple of Mediterranean Gulls flying over which seemed to please one or two people nearby as much as the Spectacled Warbler!

On the way back home we stopped off at the patch briefly. A Common Tern was knocking around (generally scarce here) and 2 Turtle Doves were on the wires. Insects included my first Large Skippers and Broad-bodied Chaser of the year.

Last weekend I'd not been able to go the Norfolk Moth Survey event at Barrow Common due to my shoulder and had missed some excellent moths like Netted Pug and Rosy Marbleds. Rob gripped me off with some superb photos though! He made up for it tonight by coming round and picking me up for an evening's mothing. We didn't go far - just down the road to Bawdeswell Heath. It was a good evening although the total number of species was no greater than what was awaiting me at home when I returned. The highlights were New Oak Slender Caloptilia robustella (update December - now confirmed by gen det, thanks Jon ), Gold-ribbon Argent Argyresthia brockeella, Crescent Groundling Teleiodes luculella, Brindled Tortrix Ptycholoma lecheana, Red-barred Tortrix Ditula angustiorana, Oak Marble Lobesia reliquana, 3 Red Rollers Ancylis mitterbacheriana, 3 Crescent Bells Epinotia bilunana, 2 Birch Bells Epinotia demarniana, Spotted Shoot Moth Rhyacionia pinivorana, False Cacao Moth Ephestia unicolorella, 2 Small Yellow Waves, 4 Brindled White-spots, Bordered White, White-pinion Spotted, Lime Hawkmoth and 4 Lobster Moths. Other moths that were new for the year included Gorse Case-bearer Coleophora albicosta, Heather Groundling Neofaculta ericetella, 12 + Barred Fruit-tree Tortrices Pandemis cerasana, Green Oak Tortrix Tortrix viridana, 4 White-shouldered Marbles Apotomis turbidana, Water Veneer Acentria ephemerella, 2 Brown Silver-lines, 2 Peppered Moths, 3 Rosy Footmen and Marbled White Spot. (Update December: also a Larch Case-bearer Coleophora laricella now gen detted by Jon)

Lots of moths at home. New for the year were Large Fruit-tree Tortrix Archips podana, probable Flax Tortrix Cnephasia asseclana, Codling Moth Cydia pomonella and 2 Fan-foots. 3 Yellow-spot Tortrices Pseudargyrotoza conwagana and 9 Heart and Darts were both record counts for here and 2 Marbled Browns brought the total so far this spring to 8 - I have only seen this species at home once prior to this year.

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Spectacled Warbler, Burnham Overy, 7th June

 

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Broad-bodied Chaser (left) and Turtle Doves (right), Bittering, 7th June

 

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Helophilus pendulis, Bittering (left) and Girdled Mining Bee, Rawhall Wood (right), 7th June

 

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Crested Cow-wheat (left) and Red-headed Cardinal (right), Rawhall Wood, 7th June

 

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Lobster Moth (left) and Lime Hawkmoth (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Small Yellow Waves, Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Sawfly (left) and Brindled White-spot (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June - anyone know what the Sawfly is, assuming I'm right in thnking it is a Sawfly?

 

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Grey Pine Carpet (left) and Spruce Carpet (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Gold-ribbon Argent Argyresthia brockeella (left) and New Oak Slender Caloptilia robustella (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June (thanks Jon for confirming the robustella)

 

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Oak Marble Lobesia reliquana (left) and Red-barred Tortrix Ditula angustoriana (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Crescent Bell Epinotia bilunana (left) and White-shouldered Marble Apotomis turbidana (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Birch Bell Epinotia demarniana (left) and Rosy Footman (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Spotted Shoot Moth Rhyacionia pinivorana (left) and Brindled Tortrix Ptycholoma lecheana (right), Bawdeswell Heath, 7th June

 

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Crescent Groundling Teleiodes luculella, Bawdeswell Heath (left) and Codling Moth Cydia pomonella, Bawdeswell (right), 7th June

 

Friday 6th June

I turned in at dusk tonight so no opportunity to attract many moths. Among the few was my first Cypress Tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella of the year.

 

Thursday 5th June

Two Vine's Rustics were a surprise this evening - although I've seen a few here before I've only ever had autumn-generation ones before. I've also never had two in a night before here. Not much else of note apart from what was probably my first Apple & Plum Case-bearer Coleophora spinella of the year (update December: It wasn't spinella, it was Larch Case-bearer Coleophora laricella, my first ever here)

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Vine's Rustic (left) and Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (right), Bawdeswell, 5th June

 

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Chalcid wasp Troymus sp., Bawdeswell, 5th June

 

Tuesday 3rd June

A few moths tonight including 4 Middle-barred Minors, a good count for here. This rather distinctive fly was smarter:

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Anomoia permunda, Bawdeswell, 3rd June

 

Monday 2nd June

A good night for moths with the likes of Toadflax Pug, Green Pug and Elephant Hawkmoth. Others that were new for the year included probable Case-bearing Clothes Moth Tinea pellionella, Cypress Tip Moth Argyresthia cupressella, Elder Pearl Anania coronata and Burnished Brass. Small Angle Shades was good too and 3 Marbled Brows were the most I've ever seen here and included a dark form which I don't recall seeing before.

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Green Pug (left) and Toadflax Pug (right), Bawdeswell, 2nd June

 

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Marbled Browns, Bawdeswell, 2nd June

 

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Elephant Hawkmoth, Bawdeswell, 2nd June

 

Sunday 1st June

I managed to drive round the corner to the bottlebank one evening during the week so I thought I'd try driving a little bit further this evening, and headed off to the local patch. My shoulder is really stiff in the mornings and I wouldn't have attempted it then but by late afternoon it seemed feasible. I was fine going there, and having a bit of a mosey round the patch, but by the time I came home it was clear that I had reached my limit and when I had to use my right arm I really felt it. I don't think I'll be driving to work or up to the coast just yet - hope it won't be too long though as it's definitely getting better!

The little excursion was worthwhile anyway. Birds included Cuckoo, Avocet, Little Ringed Plover and best of all, Turtle Doves singing at two different places. The best thing though was a moth - my first ever Small White Wave. There are something like 1800 species of moth on the Norfolk list and I've seen less than 800 but by now I'd have thought I'd have at least heard of all the common ones, at least the macros and especially any really distinctive ones. This one however had somehow eluded my consciousness and was completely off my radar - I hadn't a clue what it was when I first saw it and was amazed to see it clear as day in the book on a page I must have flipped through hundreds of times. Actually it's not all that common - there was only one county record in 2013 and one in 2012, though a good deal more than that in other years.

A few other moths were interesting, like 2 Red Piercers Lathronympha strigana, Fenland Pearl Anania perlucidalis, 4 Yellow-spot Tortrices Pseudargyrotoza conwagana and, depending what it turns out to be, probably an as-yet unidentified Dichrorampha sp. (update December - indeed it was interesting - Lead-coloured Drill Dichrorampha plumbana, gen detted by Jon). New for the year were Red-brindled Dwarf Elachista rufocinerea, Yarrow Conch Aethes smeathmanniana, 3 Yellow-barred Long-horns Nemophora degeerella, 5 Hook-marked Straw Moths Agapeta hamana, 2 Plum Tortrices Hedya pruniana and 2 Treble-bars. There were several other interesting insects including a Brown Argus butterfly.

Back at home I heard the Little Owl alarm call again. A fair variety of moths came in including a Dark Spectacle.

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Small White Wave, Rawhall Wood (left) and Green Nettle Beetle Phyllobius pomaceus, Rawhall gravel pits (right), 1st June

 

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Grammoptera ruficornis (left) and unidentified Longhorn beetle (right), Rawhall Wood, 1st June - anyone know what the right hand beetle is? Nearest I can find is Musk Beetle but it as only about 10mm long which seems to be too small for that

 

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Tenthredo mesomela (a sawfly; left) and Fenland Pearl Anania perlucidalis, Bittering, 1st June

 

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Yellow-barred Longhorn Nemophora degeerella (left) and Lead-coloured Drill Dichrorampha plumbana (right), Bittering, 1st June

 

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Tree Bumblebee (left) and White-tailed Bumblebee (right), Bittering, 1st June

 

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Red Fox, Creaking Gate Lake (left) and Dark Spectacle, Bawdeswell (right), 1st June

 

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