Wednesday 5 October 2016

Migrant Insects

Gem - an immigrant species and one that I trap very infrequently. Other immigrants last night included Convolvulus Hawk-moth, 4 Rusty-dot Pearl, 2 Diamond-back Moth, 12 Silver Y and 15 Rush Veneer. Much bigger numbers than I've been getting of late.
Despite the stiff easterly that was rattling our windows last night I stuck the trap out in the relative shelter at the back of the house. As well as the aforementioned immigrant species I trapped Large Yellow Underwing, Lesser Yellow Underwing, Beaded Chestnut, Lunar Underwing, Shuttle-shaped Dart, Feathered Ranunculus, Copper Underwing, Sallow, Snout, Common Marbled Carpet, Black Rustic, Angle Shades, Light Brown Apple Moth and Ruddy Streak (Tachystola acroxantha).
As my year 8 classes are studying classification and variation at the moment, I decided to take some moths in to school. As you can imagine, the Convolvulus Hawk-moth went down a storm and I was thrilled that the other species generated plenty of interest too. It's amazing how much science you can get out of a small collection of moths! I ended up doing some 'moth work' with my year 10 and 11's too. I love my job at times!

Convolvulus Hawk-moth - it's been a great year for this species. Always an exciting discovery in the trap.

Rush Veneer - 15 trapped last night and numerous others 'kicked up' from grass on a windswept Orcombe Point this evening.

Silver Y

Diamond-back Moth - haven't seen too many of these since the spring 'mega-influx'.

Rusty-dot Pearl

'Helice' form of Clouded Yellow on Orcombe this evening. Difficult birding in strong wind with only 2 Stonechats and 2 Wheatears recorded on a lightning-quick visit.

Stacks of Red Admirals around at the moment.

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