WINE RACE 2016 .. MATTc380 .. TRENT 353 .. BEN 347 ...... Garden species:- Macros 354, Micros 362, Total 716

Sunday, 27 February 2011

26th Feb...Clouded Drab

Much colder last night (2.1 deg overnight low) with a stiff, gusting breeze/wind. There was nothing around before 11.30 but I left the trap and lights running.
So just the two moths, both with a very high carbon footprint, were found in the skinner this morning.
Surprisingly, there were no Common Quakers to be seen, but given the weather last night I'll settle for a Hebrew Character and a year first Clouded Drab.
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CLOUDED DRAB 2188
HEBREW CHARACTER 2190 Year tally for garden is now 67 moths of 19 species (13 macro, 6 micro).
At the same time last year I had just 3 species !

Saturday, 26 February 2011

25th Feb 2011...Double-striped Pug

It always amazes me how moths manage to fly in the rain.
I have been in the car driving along in the pouring rain and seen moths in the headlights...it's got me beat !
Last nights constant rain got heavier as the night went on and the wind picked up but 13 moths were trapped/lured with 2 new species for the year.
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DOUBLE-STRIPED PUG.....not seen in my garden until 25th April last year.
COMMON QUAKER ...showing underwings, unusual.
Last night:-
6 x Common Quaker
3 x Agonopterix heracliana
1 x Hebrew Character *FFY
1 x Double-striped Pug *FFY
1 x Satellite
1 x Emmelina monodactyla
Total to date:- 65 moths of 18 species (12 macro, 6 micro)

Friday, 25 February 2011

24th Feb 2011....Quaking all over

Another favourable evening certainly suited Common Quaker, I had 7 in the trap this morning plus one from earlier which I had removed.
The shed blacklights lured a Chestnut and Satellite but the Dotted Border still remains on The Dells "most wanted" list.
The competition for the most species between myself and Matt (http://trappingsofsuccess.blogspot.com/) took a turn for the worst as he had a good night last night and eased into the front with a "mickey taking" Dotted Border and a Small Quaker plus a Clouded Drab.
I did manage to cling on to a very close 2nd position with a year first Epiphyas postvittana with hundreds more to come.
They probably enjoy my old variety apples, a Lord Lambourne cooking apple, Charles West dessert apple plus a Golden Hornet crab apple.
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EPIPHYAS POSTVITTANA 998 (Light Brown Apple Moth)
COMMON QUAKER 2187

THE SATELLITE 2256


CHESTNUT 2258 8 x Common Quaker
5 x Agonopterix heracliana
1 x Satellite
1 x Chestnut
1 x Tortricodes alternella
1 x Epiphyas postvittana
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Garden total for 2011 = 52 moths of 16 species, (10 x macro, 6 x micro)



Thursday, 24 February 2011

Holme Wood 23rd Feb 2011

Small Brindled Beauty One of the seven Small Brindled Beauty's trapped at Holme Wood

23rd Feb... Surprisingly early

What a difference a few degrees make !
Temperature stayed around 9 deg C until after midnight before dipping to 6 deg.
An Early Grey was a month earlier than last year (25th March) and a Dark Chestnut was on the shed near the blacklights. My second March Moth joined my third Oak Beauty after 3 Tortricodes alternella and an Agonopterix heracliana had been listed.
Best night of the year so far and tonight (24th) looks to be promising.
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EARLY GREY 2243



DARK CHESTNUT 2259 Evenings tally :-
3 x Tortricodes alternella 1025
Agonopterix heracliana 688
Dark Chestnut 2259
Oak Beauty 1930
March Moth 1663
Early Grey *FFY 2243
Garden Tally :-
35 moths of 15 species ( 10 macro, 5 micro )
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New Site now being monitored. HOLME WOOD, Northill, Bedfordshire.
Son and Dad have joined forces to monitor this site on a "once a month" basis.
Matt "Ratface" Burgess has designed a foldaway portable trap with seperate clip-on twin 15 watt tubes and yours truly has wired the inverters and lampholders to a weatherproof box. ( After first crossing over the lampholders and burning out a tenners worth of tubes during testing !)
We set it up at Holme Wood for its first outing last night and I went there at "sparrow fart" this morning to check the contents .
Full report will appear on Matts blog in the near future along with some pics of the moths , trap and site.
Not a bad first outing. Obviously all year firsts :-
7 x Small Brindled Beauty
5 x Dotted Border
5 x March Moth
2 x Tortricodes alternella
1 x Pale Brindled Beauty
1 x Hebrew Character
1 x Engrailed spp.
1 x Spring Usher
1 x Clouded Drab
24 Moths for 9 species.
Next outing will be sometime in March
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A worker bee was seen for the first time this year in Matts garden this morning.......................

........................and it was nice to see the first Primrose in flower in Holme Wood.


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How many times have you seen one of these on the wall at night and thought it was a moth ?
Yeah, me too !





A Marbled Beauty "catty" munching on the lichen on my wall last night






Plenty of Seven-spot ladybirds about.







" There's a killer on the road"......Lyrics from a famous song by The Doors....this particular killer was on the wall above the doors









Who saw the film "The Fly" ?
This one looks like Brundle









Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Signs of Spring and another Oak Beauty

I love to see the Dog Violets come into flower around the garden, it means Spring is just around the corner.
They are very invasive and spread like wildfire so have to be "culled" every year or so, and when the flowers have finished the leaves grow into large clumps.
The smaller Sweet Violet will soon follow and Spring will be upon us at last.
It's been a long Winter.
Despite last nights rain and constant drizzle an OAK BEAUTY was found on the illuminated shed wall.

Garden tally 2011: 26 moths of 14 species

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Common moth is new tick

This Pale Brindled Beauty has been on my target list for some time.
Last year I struggled to find any winter months moths but since installing a 15watt flourescent fitting under the eaves of my shed, and using a 15w 350BL tube to bathe the shed wall in light, I have added 4 new species to my garden list.
To illustrate this further, at this time last year I recorded just 3 species....Winter Moth, Dark Chestnut and Satellite, all caught in the skinner trap.
So far this year the total is 14 species, with only Common Quaker and Chestnut being found in the traps. The traps will come into their own very soon but the cold weather moths seem to prefer the illuminated walls.
The other advantage is I can put on the wall lights during rainy weather and not have to worry about soaked traps as I have no effective rain guards fitted.

Spring Usher is still on my target list and a Dotted Border would be a welcome addition......seek and ye shall find !
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PALE BRINDLED BEAUTY 1926 Year total to date:-
25 moths of 14 species ( 9 macro, 5 micro )

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Garden produce

I put on two Skinner traps last night and my optimism paid off. This Chestnut was in the 100 watt FUL and an Early Moth, first one ever recorded in my garden, was on the shed wall above the 22w/20w Actinic/Blacklight trap. Temperatures stayed just above 4degC after a brief dip. Where have the micros gone ???
FFY = First for year in garden
GF = Garden first
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CHESTNUT 2258 .......FFY
EARLY MOTH 1960....GF Year tally:-
24 moths of 13 species (5 micro and 8 macro)

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Strike one for the new trap

My new toy was showing 1.7 deg C at 0200am last night/this morning and I had already checked trap at 0130 with no results.
I had figured that this was too cold and decided to turn off the lights, but to my surprise there was a Common Quaker shivering in the egg boxes.
This was the first moth found IN the traps this year, the rest were all found on the illuminated walls. Strike one for the upgraded Skinner !
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The new toy, which I find useful at this time of year as the local weather forecast
is often quite a few degrees out on local temperature predictions.
As can be seen, yesterdays maximum was 7.2 and last nights min was 1.7....the current temp is 7.1
This is a quality version, made in Germany, and automatically resets daily.
Vorsprung durch technik !
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COMMON QUAKER 2187 Year tally:-
22 moths of 11 species (6 macro, 5 micro)

Sunday, 13 February 2011

New macro

I broke my duck at last on the elusive March Moth, elusive in MY garden that is. Got back at midnight after enjoying superb Indian cuisine at the India Lounge retaurant in Sandy and an excellent bottle of Australian Merlot at the "Ratface" domicile.
Temperature was 2.8 deg C, so no great expectations......and there HE was, sitting on the garden shed blacklight lampholder.
(Pale Brindled Beauty is still at large)
The next few days look to be unfavourable though according to the Met Office, with arctic conditions returning and strong winds.
The false Spring was good while it lasted...roll on the real Spring.
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March Moth 1663 (male)
The upgraded Skinner with 4 x 25watt FUL lamps as viewed from the house.
I daren't go any brighter but a 250watt mercury vapour is very tempting ! Tally to date :-
21 moths of 10 species (5 x micro, 5 x macro)

Saturday, 12 February 2011

New micro

Perfect conditions last night, at least until midnight when the rain started.
The expected rush of macros didn't happen, much to my disappointment.
A few micros put in an appearance, and the little fella with the big name, pictured below, is a new addition to my scant micro list. This year I am determined to pay more attention to the micros which were sadly neglected previously.
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AMBLYPTILIA ACANTHADACTYLA 1497
Last nights tally:-
688 Agonopterix heracliana x 3
1025 Tortricodes alternella
1497 Ambyptilia acanthadactyla
count so far.......20 moths of 9 species

Friday, 11 February 2011

Micronite

A warm but wet evening slowed things down after last nights excitement. I even relinquished my brief early lead over the Ratface species count, of Upper Caldecote "Ratface" trap fame.
The micros were about in the early evening though.
No new species however, but hope springs eternal.....
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Agonopterix heracliana
Three x Tortricodes alternella




That's all folks !



Thursday, 10 February 2011

Oh, What a Beauty !

At last ! Higher temperatures without the howling wind of previous nights.
All the garden traps went on along with the wall/shed lights and regular patrols were the order of the evening.
The lowest temperature was 5.5 deg C for a short period but it shot back up to 8deg shortly after when a cloud cover moved in.
Two Agonopterix heracliana were caught in the early evening, followed by a garden "first" Oak Beauty on the shed flourescent fitting.
A Satellite appeared on the shed wall followed by a new garden micro, Tortricodes alternella to end a long drought.
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one of two AGONOPTERIX HERACLIANA 688

A common micro but a Dells garden first for this.......
TORTRICODES ALTERNELLA 1025

688 Tortricodes alternella


This is the first "white eyed" Satellite record for the garden, the past captures have all been the form with orange "eyes".
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THE SATELLITE 2256



Last nights Piece de Resistance was undoubtedly this stunning Oak Beauty.
A new record for The Dells garden and a very welcome one.
UK Moths give the flight time as March, so the warm evening stirred this little beauty into action a little early.
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OAK BEAUTY 1930
Totals to date :-
4 Macro
4 Micro
10 moths in total



My garden traps and lighting set-up

This is my garden set-up, a weird and wonderful array of traps and lights.
Pictured below is my old faithful Skinner trap.
I could not possibly use a mercury vapour lamp as I live in a row of semi-detached houses with the back gardens meeting the adjacent back gardens of the houses opposite, if that makes sense.
The good thing about this is the houses were built in 1917 and there are well established shrubs and a few old fruit trees, even a large Scotts Pine two gardens away.
On the downside, there is quite a lot of light pollution.
SO, my no.1 Skinner is fitted with a 20watt blacklight tube and two 11watt PL lamps filched from a "Flykiller".
At the rear of the garden is an experimental Skinner, which also has two 11watt actinic lamps on seperate bridge.
This has been quite effective but will soon have 4 x 25watt FUL lamps fitted integrally.
This should test the neighbours patience as it will soon kick out 100watts instead of the 22watts it is now producing.

On the other side at the rear of my garden lurks my home-made shed.
Two 25watt BC blacklights in batten lampholders and a 15watt actinic flourescent fitting light up the shed wall and the stone back garden wall.
A white roller blind can be pulled down for that "disco" effect when the actinic florrie is turned off.
I have had some of my best results here, including a Scarce Bordered Straw, and tonight (feb 9th) a garden 1st Oak Beauty (pics on next posting), which is very early in the year for this species.
I like to light up the walls and patrol every half an hour with spec pots and camera, whilst thinking to myself about how much shite I am NOT missing on TV these days !


Finally, at the back of the shed I have fitted another 15watt actinic florrie between the shed and the Yew tree to light up the brick wall.
A perspex rainguard has been fitted so this is now a permanent fixture. This pulled in a year first Agonopterix heracliana tonight, the experimental Skinner nailed another A. heracliana and the shed wall lights attracted the Oak Beauty.
The Number One Skinner ? Zilch ! ....That's the way it goes.
I doubt if I will run all 4 together too often, it's not so bad at this time of year when very little is flying and it makes E.D.F. very happy, but later in the year this would become a full time occupation.
So there you have it...............
Full traps !