Sunday, 21 March 2021

First Moths of the Year


I have put the moth trap out a few times during the winter months but so far with a zero catch. I can only assume that any species of moths that are flying are out in the countryside and woods, rather than frequenting my urban garden.

My only winter catch was on the 16th February, not to the trap but from one landing on my shirt whilst I was out in the garden moving some plants around.

It looked unusual, obviously a Plume moth,  but with colours and patterns that I had not seen before. Checking the field guide confirmed that it was just a darker brown version of the Common Plume showing  typical spots and lines for that variant.

Common Plume

I tried again at the weekend but as before there was nothing in the trap in the morning, so I modified the trap adding a second 20 Watt BLB bulb and hanging a white sheet behind the lights. Success, of sorts, an Early Grey and what I think was a worn Bloxworth Snout in the trap, with a second Early Grey and a couple of Common Plumes on the sheet.

Early Grey

At least identification didn't take too long, the Early Grey being one of the more common moths at this time of year.

Bloxworth Snout

With the second species being an obvious member of the Snout family, overwintering Bloxworth seems to be the best fit. I had three or four at the end of last year with the last two being on the 8th and 9th of November. It was well worn but the markings although faint seem to map onto those shown in the field guide. 

On reflection perhaps not my most successful mothing night but it's a start and worth recording.

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