Click the event location to view the species recorded
|March 2013 -
Lake Vyrnwy - SH965241
because of snow.
Llogel - SJ032154
the disappointment of having to cancel our first
event of the season due to heavy snow, it was good to be able to get
out for the Pont Llogel event.
weather during the day had been clear and sunny,
but, as I set off for the event, I was hoping for some cloud cover to
temperatures up during the evening, unfortunately my hopes weren’t to
materialise and the temperature fell to a finger numbing 2.1c by
However, as things transpired, the cool conditions didn’t have much
Pont Llogel SSSI is a linear site of about half a
mile, along the River Vyrnwy. In the most part it has quite a dense
both mature trees and thicker ground cover, excellent conditions for
good moth trapping.
traps had all been set up nice and early and while
we settled down around base camp having a cuppa, we all pondered, as we
do, on what we thought the total species count would be for the
guesses were all on the low side, from a paltry 5 species to a slightly
healthy 14 species, but as it turned out we were all quite wrong.
soon as dusk fell Douglas
was in action with his net. First up was a Shoulder
Stripe and a second swoop of his net bagged a Diurnea fagella which turned
out to be the most numerous micro species of the night. Soon after this we all
went to inspect the traps for the first time, when several species – Common Quaker, Early Thorn, Clouded Drab,
Pale Brindled Beauty, Chestnut and Early Toothed-striped were
(so much for the guess of 5 species for the evening). As the evening
it became apparent that all our guesses were going to be well out, as
one our numbers were all passed. By mid evening examples of Twin-spotted Quaker, Red Chestnut, Early
Grey and Yellow Horned
brought to the table. As it approached midnight and the chill was
through our clothing we did one final check of the traps when Oak Beauty, Small Quaker, Brindled Pug and
lastly Dotted border,
were all added to the list.
best species of the evening were Pale Pinion,
White-marked and right at
the last knockings while we were packing up a rather nice micro Semioscopis
avellanella which gave us a total of 20 species for
the event, a total
which none of us could have imagined before the lights went on – which
show, trapping on cooler nights can sometimes, under the right
conditions, be \\very
- Tyddyn Dauddwr - SJ235173
Sheet ready for use
second event of the year was kindly hosted by Rod Aspinwall at his
organic smallholding in the north-east of the county. The site is a mix
of habitats with mature woodland, hedgerow, meadow and several large
ponds. With six MV lights we were able to cover these different
to the rather poor weather we have had so far this year, the night
itself was dry and mild.
Green attended this event equipped with a beating tray and his sharp
pair of eyes. Throughout the night, Dave was actively looking for early
stages and recorded several caterpillars as well as several leaf mines
and other tell-tale signs.
the lights were turned on, I netted the first macro species of the
and Early Thorn.
It was not long before moths were turning up at the traps: one of the
first was a rather smart Waved
While this species is not particularly uncommon it is usually only seen
in low numbers, so we were rather surprised when it proved to be the
commonest moth of the night, with many individuals turning up in most
of the traps. A little while later a small prominent was seen buzzing
around one of the bulbs, and after a little scuffle the moth was potted
and turned out to be a lovely Chocolate-tip.
This species is very localised in the county, being confined to the
north-east corner. Yellow-barred
Brindle and Lesser
Swallow Prominent were the two final macro species of the
were fairly thin on the ground (or should that be ‘in the air’?), with
the notable species being a Monopis
laevigella, the larvae of which feed on decaying animals,
scats and other detritus! A male Nematopogon
swammerdamella was also seen - best known for its
ridiculously extensive antennae.
wasn’t just moths that kept us busy throughout the night: the site has
an extremely healthy population of Great Crested Newts – a quick peek
in the ponds yielded lots of the impressive amphibians. We even spotted
a female egg laying!
event was well attended- thanks must go out to Sue for bringing some
scrumptious chocolate cake! When we packed up just before 1am, the
temperature had fallen to 7°C. We had caught 18 species, with an
additional 14 species found in their early stages around the site. A
big thanks to our host for the night, Rod, for holding the event and
keeping us supplied with hot drinks! We may well return to this
- CAT - SH755403
Up until Saturday afternoon the weather had
been quite settled, but as
I set off to the event the rain was starting to fall, and by the time I
arrived at CAT heavy showers were sweeping over the site. The
temperature wasn’t too cold, but it was in the balance as to whether we
would record a good list of species or not.
This event was run in conjunction with the CAT staff, headed by Adam
Thorogood. Before the mothing got under way Adam took everyone on a bat
walk with bat detectors. We heard a whole roost of the tiny Pipistrelle
bats while they were emerging from their day time roost and Daubenton’s
bat was also heard flying low, feeding over the ponds. Several other
species of bat are known to be at the CAT site, but on this occasion we
only recorded the two, perhaps the weather conditions were slightly
against us on the night.
Now for the mothing. On this event we were using four different types
of light traps which included a portable Heath trap which Douglas
brought along for the first time, so we were definitely giving
ourselves the best chance to draw plenty of moths in.
As the light faded, the traps were switched on, but we got off to a
very slow start and it was some while before the first moth, a Pebble
Hook-tip, was brought to the table. Slowly things picked
up and about
an hour later, species were coming in at a steady rate. Marbled
White-spot a locally common species, the Pale Tussock, a
rather endearing species and a fresh Green Carpet with
all made an appearance. During the evening several, not so common
species were also potted, these included the Satin Lutestring, Clouded
Silver and Dwarf
Pug. The locally common Devon Carpet (a
scarce B species) was probably one of the best species of the night. A
made a very welcome appearance; this beautiful, ‘eye
opening’ species always manages to turn a few heads. As the evening
drew to a close, the fabulous Elephant
Hawk-moth turned up and was
shortly followed by the equally stunning, very large Lobster Moth. As
we were packing the kit away, the traps yielded the last two species of
the evening; these were the usually very common White Ermine and Heart
& Dart, but only one of each species on this
Micro moths were once again thin on the ground (and in the air), and
only three species were recorded, Syndemis
cynosbatella and the slightly less common Nematopogon
schwarziellus. The weather undoubtedly continued to play a
in the low numbers of micro moths recorded. It has been a familiar
pattern at all our events this year.
This event was well attended as usual and the thirty people who turned
up were all given hot drinks and cake which was very welcome indeed. I
would like to thank Adam and the CAT staff who volunteered to help run
this event, which, despite the weather, was a great success.
- Dolforwyn Woods - SO158956
Dolforwyn Woods is a Montgomeryshire Wildlife
(MWT) reserve in the Southeast of the county; it is a mixed woodland
site that tends to throw up many interesting species. This event was
held in conjunction with MWT who were bat recording. They are also
raising funds with the hope of buying the wood. Four species of bat
were recorded: Common & Soprano Pipistrelle, Noctule and Brown
The day of the event was a contender for the hottest
day of the year. With cloudless skies, the temperature began to fall
after dark but with daytime temperatures nearing 30c, it stayed in the
high to mid-teens for most of the night; it was clearly going to be a
very busy night.
The first macro of the night was a real stunner: a pristine Scallop Shell
– a restricted species in the county, which turned out to be locally
common. It wasn’t long before moths were coming in thick and
fast, with appearances from many of our
common summer species. Some of the more unusual finds inthis
period were Lilac
Beauty, Minor Shoulder-knot and Satin Beauty. Up
next was a Clouded Magpie,
another scarce species which turned out to be very common at the site –
it seems this site is a county stronghold for the species. Similarly,
the site seems to host a good population of the nationally scarce Blomer’s Rivulet.
Although we were right at the end of its flight period, four
individuals were seen throughout the night.
and Lobster Moth
were real crowd-pleasers, with their vibrant colours and hairy hind
wings respectively. The next rarity was a Brussels Lace which
was shortly followed by a Freyer’s
Pug. Clay Triple-lines and Beautiful Hook-tip
were two other local species recorded. As we were packing up, a glut of
new species were added, including a pristine Large Emerald.
species were also present in good numbers, with a stunning Alabonia
geoffrella stealing the show. Other notable records included Hedya
ochroleucana, Hedya salicella, Tinea pellionella, Epinotia abbreviana
event was not the same as usual because Peter Williams was unable to
attend due to problems with his back. I am sure everyone will join me
in wishing Peter a swift recovery in plenty of time for our next event
at Llanymynech Rocks.
In total, we recorded 107 species, adding
many new site records. The event was well attended and hopefully those
who were new to mothing went away feeling enthused!
- Llanymynech Rocks - SJ267218
Saturday had been a very calm day as far as
was concerned, so everything looked very hopeful for the event, and
quite frankly, after last year’s event at the same site, where it
rained heavily for most of the night, – anything would be better.
went that way..."
got on site at 8:00pm, where we met up with Rhona and Phil, who were
representing Shropshire Wildlife Trust in this joint event with the
MMG. The weather was still settled and fairly mild, so we were all
chomping at the bit to get started and we were all hopeful of recording
our target species for this event, the very elusive Mouse Moth as we
dearly wanted a photo for our web site.
Base camp was set up on
a flat patch of ground where we had previously been and then all the
traps were set out along a fairly linear area, no sooner had we done
this the lights were switched on and there was just time for a quick
bite to eat and a cuppa before the members of the public met in the car
park and Rhona walked them up to base camp.
As usual, I gave a
small introductory talk to the very enthusiastic crowd of 23 people and
even while I was doing this, Douglas and Peter were bringing moths to
the table – it was going to be a very busy night.
Interestingly, the first moths to be potted were three micro moths, all
members of the grass moth species; Agriphila
straminella, A. tristella, A. inquinatella; later, these
were added to by A. geniculea,
Catoptria pinella and C. falsella.
The first Macro moth was the Small
fan-footed Wave, shortly followed by the very common Large Yellow Underwing.
Next up was the Annulet,
a species which seems to do very well at this site as we found it to be
evening was in full swing and many pots filled with moths were coming
in at a very fast rate. I could hardly keep up with identifying them,
but thankfully Douglas stepped in and gave a hand at the table with the
id work. To name but a few; Orange
Swift, Yellow Shell, Shaded broad-bar, Pebble Hook-tip, Sallow Kitten,
and the beautifully iridescent Gold
Spot were all showing their beauty when Rhona brought the
star of the show to the table, the fabulous Magpie Moth.
Everyone agreed that it was up there with the best of our butterflies.
As the evening continued, still more lovely species were trapped; three
Thorn species, Dusky,
Early and Purple
opened a few eyes and these were accompanied by Copper Underwing, Lychnis,
Yellow-barred Brindle and the Swallow Prominent.
As the evening came to a close there was the usual last flurry of
species to be added to the list, including the Engrailed, Dark Marbled Carpet,
and the very late Heart
& Dart and Triple-spotted
Clay. In all, the event yielded an excellent total of 73
species of macro moth.
As for other micro moths, the total was just as impressive with 44
species recorded, the most notable ones were; Cochylis
hybridella, Pyrausta despicata, Ypsolopha scabrella, Pyrausta cingulata
(5th county record) and the plume moth Hellinsia
Notable species for this site were; Pretty
Chalk Carpet, Small Waved Umber and Haworth’s Pug which
are all limestone loving species.
Only three migrant species were recorded; Silver Y, Dark Sword-grass
and the small micro moth Udea
best species of the night was a Dart which none of us could identify at
the time, but later under closer examination it proved to be a White-line dart
which was only the forth record of this species in the
for our target species, the Mouse Moth, try as we may, once again we
failed to record this species, so still no photo for us; who knows,
perhaps we should have put more cheese in our traps! Anyway, we all
went away with the same sentiment ‘we will return’.
this story does have a rather interesting footnote. The following day,
when I opened up my-mails I had one from Douglas, titled ‘You won’t
believe it’ and attached was a photo of a Mouse Moth which he had
caught that night in his home moth trap. Don’t you just love stories
with happy endings!
Many thanks to Rhona and Phil from SWT and
Douglas and Peter who worked tirelessly throughout the event collecting
and identifying species and finally for all the members of the public
who I’m sure had a wonderful evening.
- Hafren Forest - SN857869
what had seemed like weeks the weather had been very warm, and the
night time temperatures had held up well, but on the Thursday before
the event, a cold front came across the country and that put paid to us
getting a good species list on the Saturday as the cooler conditions
swept over us.
I’d had a shoulder operation a couple of weeks
before and was still unable to drive, so I was very grateful that Alan
Tadman kindly collected me and the kit. When we arrived on site the
weather conditions were still very good, but you could certainly feel a
chill in the air, and for the first time this year, we knew that autumn
was with us.
All the traps and base camp were set up before dusk
which gave us all time to sit around the table to ‘chat moths’ for a
while - there’s always something to talk about! On this occasion I had
taken a dead pug species along with me which I had found on the ground
by my home trap. It was rather squashed; nevertheless, Douglas wanted
to take it home to try a genitalia determination. Fortunately, he was
successful and found it was a female Toadflax Pug, which is a new
species for my home site.
Back to the event – as dusk
approached the ‘lights’ were switched on and it wasn’t too long before
Douglas was in action with his net, bringing both a Small Wainscot and a
Carpet to the table. On our first visit to the traps, Garden Carpet, Small Phoenix,
Common Marbled Carpet and the rather smart Autumnal Rustic were
added to the list. Rosy
Rustic, Spruce Carpet, Early Thorn and Lesser Yellow Underwing
were all soon to follow. As the evening drew on the chill in the air
got colder and activity around the traps began to diminish, however, we
still managed to record Angle
Shades, Purple Bar, Flame Carpet and a cracking Pink-barred Sallow.
As midnight approached we decided to call it a night, and as the traps
were being put away, the rather uncommon Pine Carpet was
Micro Moths were pretty thin on the ground; the first one recorded was
a dead Agriphila
tristella which was found inside the nearby toilet block.
Other species to come to light were Eudonia
mercurella, Acleris emargana and Acleris
laterana. The only other micro record was the leafmine of Mompha
raschkiella, which was found on willowherb.
The best record of the night was also the only migrant species, a
pristine Dark Sword-grass.
is only the second time we have held an event at this site and on this
occasion we were certainly unlucky with the weather, but the Hafren
Forest has much potential, so, we will definitely come here again,
hopefully bringing warmer conditions with us next time!
- Cors Dyfi - SN704984
event started, after several days of rain and wind, on a calm and
warmer evening with temperatures around 14 degrees before cooling later
in the night when the cloud cleared. 7 traps were set up altogether
with 4 along the 300m of available boardwalk, 2 near the hide including
an Actinic, one in the carpark and a bulb and sheet immediately in
front of the Visitor Centre.
The first moth brought to the table was a Silver Y
which was excellent given that we had opted for 'Autumn Migrants' as
this years target species. Many more moths turned up on Peter's table
Yellow Line Quaker, Red Line Quaker, the lovely Merveille du Jour, Canary
Shouldered Thorn and a selection of micros including Ypsolopha
sequella, Scrobipalpa costella (a new species for Cors
Dyfi) and a number of the Acleris
Other Autumn Migrants recorded on the night were Vestal, Red Sword Grass
noctuella, also known as Rush Veneer.
51 species (32 macros and 19 micros) were recorded on the night and 33
people attended the event, both figures quite impressive when you
consider this was October!
Certainly the best find of the night came fairly late on when one of
the traps offered up a new county record in the form of a Feathered Ranunculus.
This specimen was taken home by myself in a pot to photograph and be
returned the next day, overnight it laid about 50-60 eggs inside the
pot! These will hopefully be reared through and be released back at
Cors Dyfi in due course.
A total of 5 new species for the reserve were recorded bringing the
total count for this site to 490.
Thank you to everyone who turned up and helped make this a very
enjoyable event, we hope to see you again next year.
Maria. E. Wagland