Friday, 20 October 2017

Bridgend, night of 18th October

The garden catch was 15 moths of 9 species, the highlight being Barred Sallow and Green-brindled Crescent both new for the year (YT to 192sp). Also trapped were LB Apple moth, CM Carpet, Spruce Carpet, Large YU, Lesser YU, 2 Vestal and Blair's Shoulder-knot. We also had a hoverfly,  Eupeodes sp, probably corollae and 2 caddisflies, probably Limnephilus lunatus


Butterfly Conervation AGM/Members Day - This Saturday

Just a reminder that at Kenfig tomorrow the south Wales branch of BC is holding it's annual get together with the usual mix of speakers, including micro-moth guru David Agassiz, new Chief Exec Jim Asher, European Butterfly specialist Martin Davies as well as stuff from Norman Lowe and Russel Hobson. Non-members are welcome. It starts at 10:30 and should finish at around 4pm. Dave

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Craig Gwladus Country Park

A NMN event at Craig Gwladus, Cadoxton Neath, on the night of the 13th, primarily based on two traps left overnight in gardens edging onto the park produced a good tally of 163 moths of 39 spp. Those of interest included Pandemis cinnamomeana 1, Acleris sparsana 2, Pseudargyrotoza conwagana 1, Pine Carpet 2, Spruce Carpet 26, Red-Green Carpet 12, Common Marbled Carpet 38, Pale November Moth 1, Scarce Umber 1, Pinion-streaked Snout 1, Flounced Chestnut 4, Chestnut 3, Dark Chestnut 1, Satellite 1, Merveille du Jour 5, Large Ranunculus 1, Grey Shoulder-knot 1 & Turnip Moth 2. There was a very good turnout of participants in the morning at the opening of the traps, the MDJs in particular pleasing parents and children alike. A re-run is planned for the summer which should add significantly more records to this interesting site, which comprises extensive plantings of Beech, Pine and Sitka, with a large open area recently cleared larch, plus a hanging oak wood with a long line of sandstone crags under its canopy. I did venture up there with a torch at night, unsuccessfully looking for Ivy, and was amazed at the number of young Palmate Newts hidden in the recesses of these vertical crags – clearly an important winter hibernation habitat for amphibians at this site. 

Many thanks to Lisa (Kirman) for organising the event, Jo, Ian and Sue for having the traps in their gardens and to Chris (Manley) for joining me in what turned out to be an exceptionally poor evening session (just 2 spp of moth in 2 hours with 3 traps running - thank goodness for the over-nighters!).


There were 17 spp in the garden trap this morning, highlights being Grey Shoulder-knot & Delicate (just our 2nd garden rec. and a species which has been very scarce for the last 10 years ).

Query for Dave: For some reason MapMate is hiding my records of Grey Shoulder-knot where I have used the trinomial Lithophane ornitopus lactipennis (this annoyingly being the default entry for my 3 letter code data entry system, which I now change). Also I can see the trinomials don't plot on the atlas maps, e.g. my Oxwich record does not show and I suspect there must be a number of others which are mysteriously hidden. Even when I do an F5 query on the trinomial the records don't show. For ref I do have 4 garden entries for the binomial which show normally. When I figure out what's going on I'll change them to the binomial so they all plot on the same map.

Llantwit Major 17th October

We almost skipped putting the trap out on Tuesday night; now that it's dark in the mornings it's trickier to deal with before going in to work. Lucky we did though as one of only two moths in the trap was our first ever Merveille du Jour. Almost fell out of the shed scrambling for a moth pot. I think it might be a first for Llantwit as well.

The other moth was a Yellow-line Quaker so also new for the new garden!

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Roath Ni Moth

Trapped at Roath 16.x.17. 6th garden rec. others in 1996 [2], 2003, 2006 & 2013. I've also been lucky enough to see another 3 in VC41 (KNNR 1992, Whiteford 1996 & Llanishen 2006). This 2017 record is the latest seen in VC41.

16th October - Llandaff - Garden

It was far to blustery to keep the trap on overnight last night. However, I kept it on till around 3am just in case. Sadly, it was not worth it with only a couple of moths, a Brimstone, a Snout and an almost fully grown Garden Tiger larvae inside amongst the egg boxes. I've had a Large White butterfly in the past but never a larvae. So is a first for me.

Monday, 16 October 2017

Creigiau - 14 October

Another good box for the time of year with 22 moths of 18 species. Highlights included Merveille du Jour (2), November Moth agg (2), Chestnut and Pseudargyrotoza conwagana. First arrivals of the year were Feathered Thorn, Lunar Underwing and Yellow-line Quaker.


Merveille du Jour (1st garden rec.) & Ni Moth (6th site rec.) - 11 species of migrants in garden this year.

Moth Nights 2 and 3

I left two portable traps at Lanlay Meadows (Peterston-super-Ely) on Saturday night. The results on Sunday morning were very good with a range of autumnal species present, including 6 Merveille du Jour. The highlight, though, was a Vestal.

Back home, the garden trap has been quite productive too, with several species new for the year and Crocidosema plebejana new for the site on Friday night. There were a few Cardiff records of this tortricid in the excellent migrant year 2006, but there haven't been any in the capital since then.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Bridgend last night

Just a worn Vestal the highlight among the Straw Dot, 3 CM Carpets, 10 LB Apple moths, 1 Light Emerald and 4 Blair's Shoulder-knots. WE also had some interesting Limnephilus type caddisfly species - anyone know a good person to sort the identity out for us?

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Creigiau - Thursday night

As I was grounded and couldn't get to Lavernock to meet up with George & Co for NMN, I put the box out in the garden. 22 moths of 15 species including a couple that were new for the year - Red-green Carpet (3) and Vapourer.


OTD 25 years ago the idea of the GMRG was first thought of. I was going through the trap at KNNR and we caught 3 Blair's Shoulder-knot and the beautiful Merveille du Jour. Steve Moon said they were both new for the reserve. I then asked him what was the significance of these species, and in fact, all the species we had caught that year at Kenfig in a Glamorgan context. He didn't know. It was then I said to him - being a bit of a stato - I'm going to find out. Any suggestions as to where I start? The trail was a long one, being both fascinating and revealing. It lead to the formation of the GMRG in 1995, the database and finally the Moths of Glamorgan a few years ago. We asked Steve Moon could he choose an emblem for the club, he just said it has to be the Merveille du Jour - the moth that made it all happen. 
In memory of Steve Moon & Stefan Golaswezski both founder members of the GMRG and dedicated moth recorders.

Friday, 13 October 2017

Coleophora cases in the Alun Valley

Last October, cases of Coleophora violacea and C. fuscocuprella were found in the Alun Valley. The former was only 2nd Glamorgan record and the latter was new for the county.

During a work party yesterday, in a different part of the site, cases of both species were seen. C. violacea was on bramble this time (rather than blackthorn) - the first time I've seen Coleophora mines and case on bramble (top two photos below). C. fuscocuprella was, like last year, on hazel (bottom photo).

The mines of both species were pretty obvious (many per leaf) and I doubt they are being widely overlooked elsewhere in the county - more likely they favour the Alun Valley either because of the warm microclimate there or because they like regenerating young scrub growth (plenty of that at the site, after clearance for fritillary butterflies).

NMN - 12th October - Llandaff - Garden

Not ideal conditions but trap started early from 7:30pm till dawn.

Catch included: Light Emerald, Brimstone, Common Marbled Carpet, Red-green Carpet, Autumnal Moth, Light Brown Apple Moth, Black Rustic, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Red-line Quaker and Large Yellow Underwing.

One I'm unsure about was this reddish brown smallish looking moth. I was thinking a rather poorly marked/worn Gem?

Moth Night Bridgend

Well we didn't manage to do the theme for Moth Night, but we set the trap overnight as usual in the garden. 20 moths of 9 species was good return, the highlight being our first Red-Green Carpet since 2004 and Spruce Carpet since 2014. Red-line Quaker was also new for the year (188th sp) and we also recorded LB Apple moth, Common Marbled Carpet, Lesser Yellow Underwing, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Large Ranunculus and Square-spot Rustic. Another guest was a nice Orange Ladybird!

Ivy at Lavernock

I ran a Moth Night event for the BC South Wales Branch at Lavernock last night. The theme this year is ivy blossom and the ivy down there was at peak flowering - good timing. We recorded 11 species of moth, plus a Swallow-tailed caterpillar and plenty of other invertebrates.

The moth list was: L-album Wainscot, Turnip, Snout, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Angle Shades, Feathered Thorn, Brimstone, Common Marbled Carpet, Udea ferrugalis (photo above), Agonopterix heracleana, Acleris rhombana.

Moth Night runs over the next two nights as well, and the forecast looks ideal. Results can be submitted on the Moth Night website.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Creigiau - 07 October

Put the box out on Saturday night and, compared to recent catches, didn't do too bad - 23 moths of 14 species. The Feathered Ranunculus didn't make it from Bridgend, but I did have my first Barred Sallow, November Moth agg & Red-line Quaker (maybe .. ?) of the year. Some of these are looking quite battered .... probably something to do with the weather.

Can the last one be logged as Spruce Carpet or is this another for the 'agg' designation?

Sunday, 8 October 2017

The Gem

Last night we had a small catch in Bridgend of just 9 moths of 5 species, a few each of Common Marbled Carpet, Lesser and Large Yellow Underwing and Blair's Shoulder-knot. We also had a tiny carpet like sp which didn't open its wings until much later. I did not immediately recognise the species until furrowing through some books and checking on the internet - The Gem - a new moth for us and an uncommon, but most welcome migrant!


Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Bridgend last night (Ranunculus double)

Again quiet, 9 moths of 8 species, the highlight a Large and a Feathered Ranunculus. In fact personally,  Feathered was new for the garden for us. We've only recorded them before at Broughton and trips to Norfolk. We also trapped Blair's Shoulder-knot and Black Rustic.

Creigiau 03 October

Another quiet night on the moth front - 12 moths of 10 species. A first ever appearance of Black Rustic was a nice surprise.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Merveille du jour in Newport nick

Well whatever this poor moth's crime was, it ended up in Newport 'nick along with what looks like a Lesser Yellow Underwing! I know, just outside the county but nevertheless it was a nice surprise for Neville Davies, whom I've been mentoring - he sends me all his moth photographs. He found it in work today. Well done Nev as MDJ is much sought after by all of us!

Bridgend garden

Back to normal today with a very small catch of 7 moths of 6 species, the highlight being the first Black Rustic of the year. Others were Garden Carpet, Lesser YU, Square-spot Rustic, 2 Blair's Shoulder-knot and a Snout.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Creigiau query ... another one

This beastie was in the box on Saturday night. It looks to me like Square-spot Rustic .... except for the dark cross-line. None of my previous images show this line and I haven't seen any on-line images with it either. I am a little confused and would be grateful if someone could 'clear the fog'

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Creigiau - last night

GMS box out in what turned out to be a very wet night. Result ... not a lot - 12 moths of 8 species. Did include my first Blair's Shoulder-knot of the year of the year, so not all bad.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Llandaff - Garden - 28th September

Rain stopped play around 11 pm last night so was a pitiful night for moths in the garden.

Small catch of Pearly Underwing, Barred Sallow, Sallow, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Common Marbled Carpet, Angle Shades, Square-spot Rustic, a second gen Heart and Dart, Yellow Underwing and Lesser Yellow Underwing.

Sadly more heavy rain forecast for the next few nights.

Olive-tree Pearl [2] in Cardiff

Cardiff: The Olive-tree Pearls (P. vitrealis) from Llanishen (MCP) 27.ix.17 & Roath (DRWG) 29.ix.17. Also at Roath this am: Barred Sallow (3rd site rec.) & Meal Moth (4th site rec.). 

Thursday, 28 September 2017


27/09/17. MCP trapped at Llanishen a Olive-tree Pearl (P. vitrealis) (3rd Cardiff rec.) & a Treble Brown Spot. The latter, according to the database, is the latest ever VC41 record for this species.
Roath: Good numbers of Large Ranunculus 10+ over the last few nights. First Blair's Shoulder-knots. Plus migrants Silver Y & Rusty-dot Pearl.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Moth Jigsaw Pieces

Big thanks to Mike & Emma

Llandaff - Garden - 26th September

It was a warm 15C and misty evening here in Llandaff.

A small catch with the highlight being a Red Underwing, now put to shame with the Clifden nonpareil. Other species being Blair's Shoulder-knot, Light Emerald, Dusky Thorn, Cameraria ohridella, Brimstone, Acleris sparsana, Sallow, Willow Beauty, Red-green Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet, Light brown Apple Moth, Large Ranunculus, Pandemis cinnamomeana, Small Square-spot, Square-spot Rustic and the usual glut of Large Yellow, Lesser Yellow Underwing etc.

Clifden Nonpareil last night in Bridgend!

One of those wow moments when after all those years mothing, crawling out of bed to empty the trap you get your reward. We were greeted this morning by a Clifden Nonpareil crawling across the lawn outside our moth trap. He looked a bit beaten up, maybe a cat, but rare nonetheless and most welcome!

The moth is safe and we will keep it all day in case anyone wants to see it (small price a contribution to our daughter's sponsored project to help save the Ladybird Spider!). Just FB me or Tweet Emma.

It was obviously a migrant night, Skylarks were calling overhead as we emptied the trap and we also recorded among the 44 moths of 15 species:- LB Apple moth, Common Marbled Carpet, Light Emerald, Willow Beauty, Green Carpet, Large Yellow Underwing, Lesser Yellow Underwing, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Square-spot Rustic, Large Ranunculus, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Pale Mottled Willow, Snout and Silver Y.

 Mike, Emma & Holly.