Sunday, 17 June 2018

Little Grass-veneer

Little Grass-veneer - Platytes cerussella (male). I hadn't even noticed the 'nose cone' on this little micro until I looked properly at the photo. It dawned on me that it must be a 'Crambid', and one that wasn't even on my radar. According to 'Stirling, Parsons and Lewington' the species is local and prefers sandy soils/grassland near the coast, though it can be found further inland. Apart from being smaller than the other Grass-veneers, the male is much darker, though the female is considerably paler, and looks quite different.
A reasonable selection of moths in the trap this morning included Buff Arches, Single-dotted Wave, Treble Brown Spot, Garden Carpet, Barred Straw, Common Marbled Carpet, Grey Pug, Green Pug, Peppered Moth, Common Wave, Brussels Lace, Clouded Silver, Privet Hawkmoth, Eyed Hawkmoth, Poplar Hawkmoth, Elephant Hawkmoth, Buff Ermine, Cinnabar, Heart and Dart, The Flame, Flame Shoulder, Bright-line Brown-eye, L-album Wainscot, Dark Arches, Light Arches, Minor Agg, Middle-barred Minor, Treble Lines, Uncertain, Vine's Rustic, Mottled Rustic, Spectacle, Straw Dot, Snout and Small Fan-foot.

L-album Wainscot

Minor Agg

Minor Agg

Minor Agg

Privet Hawkmoth
Brussels Lace
Light Arches

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Currant Clearwing

Currant Clearwing - a massive thank you to Tim for inviting me over to Topsham for my first ever Clearwing. A truly stunning little insect that more than surpassed expectation. Tim found this remarkable moth on a currant bush in his garden. The larvae feed internally on the shoots and are presumably considered pests by gardeners. In twelve years of moth-trapping, and searching, I've never come close to seeing a Clearwing, so today was a special day, despite spending the majority of it stood in the rain on the side of a football pitch!


Dusky Brocade f. obscura - I don't see too many of these but they're not a rare species.

Buff Arches - my first trapped this year. Other firsts for the year included Barred Straw, Smoky Wainscot and the Dusky Brocade.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Four-dotted Footman and Silver-studded Blue

Four-dotted Footman - Martin trapped two of these last night and very kindly popped them in for me to photograph, after work. Thank you Martin. According to 'Waring and Townsend' the larvae feed on algae and lichen on the stems of heathers, sallows and other woody plants. Another brand spanking new moth for me, and a long-awaited one too!
A few bits and pieces from the moth trap last night, but the highlight was a moth trapped by Martin - see above. Late this afternoon I spent twenty minutes in a favourite little clearing on the commons, that was heaving with butterflies and dragonflies. My target - Silver-studded Blue - a true stunner in the butterfly world. Bird-wise - still very little to report, but off Mudbank yesterday afternoon - 6 Sandwich Tern, 11 Bar-tailed Godwit and 5 Whimbrel.

Newly-emerged Silver-studded Blue


Treble Brown Spot - 4 or 5 of these last night.

Small Yellow Wave

Green Oak Tortrix

I think this is Hawthorn Moth Scythropia crataegella.

Golden-ringed Dragonfly

Keeled Skimmer

Black-tailed Skimmer - I'm crap on dragonflies so please correct me if I'm wrong. Lots present in a small clearing this afternoon. The only other one I recognised was Emperor dragonfly.

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary - plenty of these found in a small area this afternoon, along with Silver-studded Blue, Large Skipper, Small Heath, Speckled Wood and Painted Lady.

Wasp or Bee species - help appreciated with this one please.

Marbled White Spot - a few of these in the clearing, along with a couple Grass Emeralds that wouldn't sit still long enough to have their photo taken.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Delicate and Broken-barred Carpet

Delicate is an immigrant species that doesn't turn up in the trap too often. The only other immigrant species in the trap was a single Rusty Dot Pearl, although I found a Diamond-back in the garden later on. The low numbers of immigrants in the trap is surprising as I've seen several Silver Y, Red Admiral, Diamond-back and Painted Lady around Exmouth over the weekend.
Birdwise - just 3 Sandwich Tern off the seafront and 4 Whimbrel off Mudbank, with a first-summer Mediterranean Gull off there yesterday.
Painted Lady - the Maer
Broken-barred Carpet - the smartest of two in the trap last night. I very rarely see this species but they're not that rare!

Garden Carpet - a grey and very indistinct individual, possibly f.thules?


Polar Grey

Eyed Hawkmoth - it's turning out to be a good year for these.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

White Colon

White Colon - a scarce coastal species and a first for me. The highlight of this morning's trap.
A total of 48 macro species, trapped in the garden last night, included 1 Common Swift, 1 Chinese Character, 2 Figure of Eighty, 2 Blood-vein, 3 Small Dusty Wave, 1 Treble Brown Spot, 2+ Riband Wave, 2 Garden Carpet, 1 Ruddy Carpet, 5+ Common Marbled Carpet, 1 Barred Yellow, 1 Cypress Carpet, 2 Freyer's Pug, 2 Common Pug, 4+ Grey Pug, 7+ Green Pug, 1 Double-striped Pug, 1 Small Seraphim, 1 Yellow-barred Brindle, 1 Clouded Border, 1 Brimstone Moth, 2 Peppered Moth, 3+ Willow Beauty, 2+ Common Wave, 6+ Clouded Silver, 2+ Light Emerald, 3 Eyed Hawkmoth, 3 Elephant Hawkmoth, 1 Puss Moth, 95+ Heart and Dart, 1 Shuttle-shaped Dart, 5+ Flame, 7 Flame Shoulder, 2 Large Yellow Underwing, 2 Setaceous Hebrew Character, 1 White Colon, 8 Bright-line Brown-eye, 1 Grey/Dark Dagger, 4 Dark Arches, 24+ Marbled Minor Agg, 3 Middle-barred Minor, 1 Treble Lines, 8 Vine's Rustic, 1 Mottled Rustic, 1 Spectacle, 6+ Straw Dot, 8 Snout and 5 Small Fan-foot. Micros included 7+ Small Magpie, 1 Ruddy Streak, 1+ Common Marble, 1+ Meadow Grey, 1 Ash Bud Moth, 1+ Olive Pearl and 1 Garden Grass-veneer.

Freyer's Pug
Ash Bud Moth - Prays fraxinella
Chinese Character
Cypress Carpet

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Grass Wave

Grass Wave - Bicton Common - one of two found.

July Belle - several of these on the wing this afternoon.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Two New Moths!

Map-winged Swift - a new one for me, trapped last night at Saint Hill by Martin. The larvae feed on bracken roots so I suppose they're possible on the local commons, and there's an outside chance of trapping one here in Exmouth. Having said that, it's not on the Warren list so perhaps they're not prone to wandering.
Another huge thank you to Martin, who again provided me some brand new moths. It's been another busy day at work, so to come home to a Map-winged Swift and a Tawny Pinion was a real tonic. Martin keeps churning out new species for his lovely garden in deepest Devon, even though he's been trapping regularly there for six years. To say that I've benefitted from his efforts is an understatement, and I'm extremely grateful to him for this!
No other news apart from a singing Reed Warbler in the West Lodge reedbed late yesterday evening. My first in Exmouth this year and presumably just a late bird on passage.

Tawny Pinion - another nice new one, and great to get so soon after seeing my first Pale Pinion. The key feature which helps separate it from the similar Pale Pinion is the blackish line extending upwards from near the trailing corner - more visible on the above photo.

Tawny Pinion - compare with Pale Pinion below.
Pale Pinion - trapped by Nick on 22/4/18

Obscure Wainscot - a bonus on top of the two new species, and only my second following one trapped in the back garden last year.

Sunday, 3 June 2018


Tree Bumblebee
Moths trapped last night included Common Swift, Figure of Eighty, Garden Carpet, Common Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet, Foxglove Pug, Mottled Pug, Common Pug, Grey Pug, Green Pug, Brimstone Moth, Peppered Moth, Willow Beauty, Common Wave, Clouded Silver, Light Emerald, Lime Hawkmoth, Poplar Hawkmoth, Elephant Hawkmoth, Pale Tussock, Orange Footman, White Ermine, Buff Ermine, Cinnabar, Heart and Dart, Flame Shoulder, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Bright-line Brown-eye, Lychnis, Dark Arches, Marbled Minor Agg, Middle-barred Minor, Treble Lines, Vine's Rustic, Mottled Rustic, Silver Y, Spectacle, Pinion-streaked Snout, Long-horned Flat-body, Light Brown Apple Moth, Small Magpie, Rusty Dot Pearl, Olive Pearl, Narrow-winged Grey and Marsh Grey.
Good to see Dave this morning - he popped over to see some moths, and the birding highlight today was a singing Cuckoo on Woodbury Common - heard for a short spell whilst walking the dog this morning with Maisie and Joel.

Nomad Bee sp? No idea.

Lime Hawkmoth

Poplar Hawkmoth

Figure of Eighty

Middle-barred Minor

Pinion-streaked Snout

Clouded Silver

Orange Footman

Mottled Pug

Bee sp

Spider sp

Early Bumblebee

Bee sp

Bee sp? Not sure this is even a bee?