August 2014

 

Monday 18th August

The new house is nearer the patch so I hope to pop in more often now. I did so this morning on the way to work, albeit not for long. Highlight was a nice Kingfisher.

With the possible exception of 2 Poplar Hawkmoths, the smartest moth tonight was a Frosted Orange - one I never managed to see at Bawdeswell. A Dusky Groundling Aroga velocella was less impressive but probably a better record. Otherwise Coxcomb Prominent, Lesser Yellow Underwing, Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing and 4 Vine's Rustics were the highlights.

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Frosted Orange (left) and Dusky Groundling Aroga velocella (right), North Elmham, 18th August

 

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Coxcomb Prominent (left) and Poplar Hawkmoth (right), North Elmham, 18th August

 

Sunday 17th August

Fewer moths tonight, though that was in part due to the Blackbirds that have now figured out that the moth trap is a source of food. More Blackbirds than moths around the outside of the trap this morning! Rhomboid Tortrix Acleris rhombana was new for the year and another tortrix was too worn to tell if it was Chamomile Conch Cochylidia implicitana or Blue-fleabane Conch Cochylidia heydeniana - either would be new for the year, heydeniana would be my first ever. Also Wainscot Smudge Ypsolopha scabrella, Canary-shouldered Thorn, Poplar Hawkmoth, Lychnis, Angle Shades and Vine's Rustic.

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Canary-shouldered Thorn (left) and Chequered Grass-veneer Catoptria falsella (right), North Elmham, 17th August

 

Saturday 16th August

I had hoped to go to the Bird Fair today but still too much needing sorting with the new house. That meant another weekend without birding too, but it takes no time to run a moth trap (albeit a bit to go through it in the morning). Best moth was a Pinon-streaked Snout, my first in Norfolk having only seen one in Scilly before. Cyclamen Tortrix Clepsis spectrana was another that never made it on to my Bawdeswell house list. Other insects that I never noted at Bawdeswell included a Birch Shieldbug and one of the distinctive Athripsodes caddisflies. Other moths included Gorse Crest Brachmia blandella, 2 Marbled Piercers Cydia splendana, Chinese Character, Maiden's Blush, Lime-speck Pug, Canary-shouldered Thorn, Poplar Hawkmoth, Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing, Square-spotted Clay and Straw Underwing.

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Cyclamen Tortrix Clepsis spectrana (left) and Pinion-streaked Snout (right), North Elmham, 16th August

 

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Maiden's Blush (left) and Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (right), North Elmham, 16th August

 

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Marbled Piercers Cydia splendana, North Elmham, 16th August

 

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Lime-speck Pug (left) and Birch Shieldbug (right), North Elmham, 16th August

 

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Anthripsodes sp. (left) and probable Pond Olive Cloeon dipterum (right), North Elmham, 16th August - the Mayfly was very different from yesterday's but it seems that they're quite sexually dimorphic

 

Friday 15th August

The garden was lively with birds when I was sorting out last night's moth trap, though nothing more exciting than Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcaps and a very large mixed flock of tits. Tonight's moths included a Purple Bar - a moth I occasionally saw during the day before I was seriously interested in moths but which I'd not seen in the last 10 years. Other moths tonight included House Groundling Bryotropha domestica, Marbled Piercer Cydia splendana, Flame Carpet, Tawny Speckled Pug, Dusky Thorn, Coxcomb Prominent, 2 Square-spotted Clays, Six-striped Rustic and Angle Shades.

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Purple Bar (left) and Flame Carpet (right), North Elmham, 15th August

 

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Pond Olive Cloeon dipterum, North Elmham, 15th August - at least I think that's what this Mayfly is

 

Thursday 14th August

Fairly good numbers of moths tonight, though 50 Common Grass-veneers Agriphila tristella made up a good proportion of them. Best moth was a Knot Grass - apparently not uncommon by any means but nevertheless a new species for me! Another that I've seen a few times but never recorded in 8 years at my old house was Lesser Swallow Prominent. Square-spot Rustic and Rosy Rustic were both new for the year and other moths in the trap included Cinereous Groundling Bryotropha terrella, Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis corylana, 3 Elbow-stripe Grass-veneers Agriphila geniculea, Coxcomb Prominent, Turnip Moth, Square-spotted Clay, Six-striped Rustic, Lychnis and Copper Underwing.

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Lesser Swallow Prominent (left) and Knot Grass (right), North Elmham, 14th August

 

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Rosy Rustic (left) and Turnip Moth (right), North Elmham, 14th August

 

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Coxcomb Prominent, North Elmham, 14th August

 

Wednesday 13th August

Elbow-stripe Grass-veneer Agriphila geniculea was new for the year. Other moths tonight included Common Marbled Carpet (my first of this generation), 2 Common Waves, Iron Prominent, Lychnis and 2 White-points.

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Hay bales, Wolferton, 13th August - taken with the iPhone in my lunch break - think I should have used a proper camera

 

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Elbow-stripe Grass-veneer Agriphila geniculea (left) and Dark-triangle Button Acleris laterana (or perhaps Strawberry Tortrix Acleris comariana; right), North Elmham, 13th August

 

Tuesday 12th August

My second ever Honeysuckle Moth Ypsolopha dentella appeared in the trap tonight. My house at Bawdeswell has a garden full of rampant Honeysuckle so it's surprising that I never recorded one there. In contrast this house doesn't appear to have any Honeysuckle. Another of tonight's moths was even better, being one I'd never recorded anywhere before: Maple Slender Caloptilia semifascia. Others included what I think was the dark form of Golden Argent Argyresthia goedartella, Wainscot Smudge Ypsolopha scabrella, Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis corylana, Small Birch Bell Epinotia ramella, Marbled Piercer Cydia splendana, Lime-speck Pug, Canary-shouldered Thorn, Turnip Moth, 4 Small Square-spots, Six-striped Rustic, Rustic and Vine's Rustic.

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Maple Slender Caloptilia semifascia (left) and Honeysuckle Moth Ypsolopha dentella (right), North Elmham, 12th August

 

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Marbled Piercer Cydia splendana (left) and Small Birch Bell Epinotia ramella (right), North Elmham, 12th August

 

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presumed Golden Argent Argyresthia goedartella, North Elmham, 12th August

 

Monday 11th August

Another moth tonight that I never recorded at Bawdeswell - Birch Marble Apotomis betuletana - I find them to be common elsewhere so perhaps surprising I never got one before at Bawdeswell. Otherwise Treble-bar, Canary-shouldered Thorn (both species I rarely saw at Bawdeswell) and two more Straw Underwings were the highlights tonight.

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Birch Marble Apotomis betuletana (left) and White-point (right), North Elmham, 11th August

 

Sunday 10th August

A Greenshank flew over the house this morning as I was going through the moth trap - a species I never recorded in Bawdeswell. Poor mothing weather meant for a trap that wasn't exactly heaving tonight. Perhaps the most interesting moth was another confusing Argyresthia. Like last night, I thought at first it was going to be goedartella but on closer inspection it doesn't appear right for that species - but not like last night's either. Again, please let me know if you can identifiy it!

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Argyresthia sp., North Elmham, 10th August - another biggish species with a wingspan of about 12 mm

 

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Orange Swift, North Elmham, 10th August

 

Saturday 9th August

Moved house today. We're now in North Elmham. What with the move and a stag do in the evening I was pretty cream-crackered by the end of the day but I've acquired a new moth trap to go with the new house so I no longer have to stay up to process the moths before I go to bed. The Robinson trap did its stuff while I was snoozing and there were plenty of moths to go through in the morning.

I expected a different range of species to appear in this house compared to the last house - the surrounding habitat is quite different. That proved true even on the first night - two species turned up that never appeared at Bawdeswell in the 8 years I was there: Tawny-barred Angle and Straw Underwing. In addition Magpie Moth was a nice surprise - the species is relatively scarce in Norfolk and I've seen a couple in the county before, once at Bawdeswell. Two Six-striped Rustics and a Flounced Rustic were new for the year and other moths of note were Bordered Carl Emmetia marginea, Birdís-nest Moth Tinea trinotella, 4 Long-horned Flat-bodies Carcina quercana, 3 Chequered Grass-veneers Catoptria falsella, Ringed China-mark Parapoynx stratiotata, Beautiful China-mark Nymphula stagnata, 2 Orange Swifts, Tawny Speckled Pug, Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing, 2 Small Square-spots, Angle Shades and Vine's Rustic.

Another micro was more confusing. I thought it was going to be Argyresthia brockeella or goedartella, but it wasn't like either species normally appear. The white along the costa should make it the much scarcer Argyresthia pygmaeella, but other features aren't right. As I type I'm not sure what it is - your views would be welcome! Another moth I wasn't sure about was one of the Dark-triangle Button Acleris laterana types - see photos below.

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Magpie Moth (left) and Straw Underwing (right), North Elmham, 9th August

 

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Argyresthia sp., North Elmham, 9th August - can you identify this? It was a biggish species - about 12 mm wingspan I think

 

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Acleris laterana aggs., North Elmham, 9th August - the one on the left seems fairly typical but the one on the right is more unusual - it was quite a bit larger than the one on the left, though still within range for laterana... or is it something else?

 

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Flounced Rustic, North Elmham, 9th August

 

Friday 8th August

Spent today trying to get packed up ready for the house move tomorrow morning. Consequently I made no attempt to catch any moths, though with windows open and lights on a few came in anyway. No grand finale among them but White-shouldered Smudge Ypsolopha parenthesella was only my second at Bawdeswell and there was also a Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata.

 

Thursday 7th August

Had a stroll at Houghton in my lunch break today. The pig fields that often hold large gulls aren't easily viewed from the road this year but I could see them from the path. Didn't have my scope with me but saw at least 2 Yellow-legged Gulls among them.

Tonight's moths included 2 Square-spotted Clays - it's evidently a good year for these. A Small Square-spot was my first of this generation and other moths included Brindled Flat-body Agonopterix arenella, 2 Gold Triangles Hypsopygia costalis and White-point.

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Square-spotted Clay (left) and Gold Triangle Hypsopygia costalis (right), Bawdeswell, 7th August

 

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Small Square-spot (left) and White-point (right), Bawdeswell, 7th August

 

Tuesday 5th August

Nothing better than a couple of Cabbage Moths among tonght's catch.

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Blackbird, Bawdeswell, 5th August

 

Monday 4th August

Stopped at Beacon Hill in my lunch break where I heard a Turtle Dove purring and saw a Latticed Heath. I did put the MV on for a bit tonight and got a Maple Button Acleris forsskaleana, only my second here and first this year. White-point was my first for a while and another Sycamore Piercer Pammene aurita was a surprise, hot on the heels of my first two ever on Friday. Others included 2 Cork Moths Nemapogon cloacella, Bird-cherry Ermine Yponomeuta evonymella, Little Ermel Swammerdamia pyrella, presumed Marbled Cosmet Mompha propinquella, probable Dark-triangle Button Acleris laterana, Chequered Grass-veneer Catoptria falsella and Gold Triangle Hypsopygia costalis.

The Gold Triangle was my 15th this year - remarkable for a moth I normally see once a year, twice in 2011 but never more than that before.

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Paloptera muliebris (left) and Robin (right), Bawdeswell, 4th August

 

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probable Dark-triangle Button Acleris laterana (or Strawberry Tortrix Acleris comariana), Bawdeswell, 4th August

 

Sunday 3rd August

No MV again tonight as we're busy getting ready for the move next weekend. A few moths always come in anyway and tonight's included a White-speckled Clothes Moth Nemapogon wolffiella - when I had one in 2011 it was second for Norfolk and with two more last year I'd notched up 75% of the county records. No more though - mine this year is the fifth to be recorded in 2014. Summer Rose Bell Notocelia roborana was only my third here and a Grey Poplar Bell Epinotia nisella was the same form as the one on Friday night - odd for such a variable species.

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Summer Rose Bell Notocelia roborana (left) and White-speckled Clothes Moth Nemapogon wolffiella (right), Bawdeswell, 3rd August

 

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Mother of Pearl Pleuroptya ruralis (left) and Grey Poplar Bell Epinotia nisella (right), Bawdeswell, 3rd August

 

Saturday 2nd August

Didn't put the MV light on tonight so only a few moths - among them was my first Cabbage Moth of the year, a Tawny Speckled Pug of the form lacking an orange patch and a Chequered Straw Evergestis pallidata.

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Tawny Speckled Pug, Bawdeswell, 2nd August

 

Friday 1st August

The new month got off to a flying start with another first for Norfolk! An unfamiliar but distinctive moth was soon identified as Italian Tubic Metalampra italica, a species known only from Italy until 2003 when one was found in Devon. Since then it has been recorded in several southern counties and is assumed to be breeding both in southern Britain and also in Belgium. It's been recorded in Suffolk before but tonight's individual in my bedroom is the first for Norfolk.

update: oh no it isn't! It was a Metalampra italica (thanks to Jon for gen detting for confirmation) but I was pipped to the post for the first for Norfolk - one was trapped at Titchwell on Tuesday night! Mine was therefore the second record, but the first for the vice county VC27!

This wasn't my only new moth tonight - there were also 2 Sycamore Piercers Pammene aurita which were my first, and an Ash-bark Knot-horn Euzophera pinguis, my first record for the house. So with three additions to the house moth list tonight the list rises to 555. Will I get any more additions before I move out next Saturday? Other good moths included Square-spotted Clay which I've only seen here once before and Grey Poplar Bell Epinotia nisella which was new for the year and which isn't common here. As surprising were 3 Slender Pugs - I've only had singles before and not often. A better looking moth that I've only recorded here occasionally (though quite often elsewhere) was Black Arches. Among the rest were Carrion Moth Monopis weaverella, Daisy Bent-wing Bucculatrix nigricomella, 2 Wainscot Smudges Ypsolopha scabrella, 2 Small Dingy Tubics Borkhausenia fuscescens, 2 Bulrush Cosmets Limnaecia phragmitella, Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis corylana, Small Purple and Gold (Mint Moth) Pyrausta aurata, Gold Triangle Hypsopygia costalis, Double-striped Tabby Hypsopygia glaucinalis, Tawny Speckled Pug and Angle Shades.

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Italian Tubic Metalampra italica, Bawdeswell, 1st August - confirmed by gen det

 

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Sycamore Piercers Pammene aurita, Bawdeswell, 1st August

 

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Daisy Bent-wing Bucculatrix nigricomella (left) and Grey Poplar Bell Epinotia nisella, Bawdeswell, 1st August

 

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presumed Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (left) and Ash-bark Knot-horn Euzophera pinguis, Bawdeswell, 1st August - not seen a postvittana looking quite like this before but can't think what else it could be: am I right?

 

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Double-striped Tabby Hypsopygia glaucinalis (left) and Tawny Speckled Pug, Bawdeswell, 1st August

 

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Angle Shades (left) and Square-spotted Clay, Bawdeswell, 1st August

 

 

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