Friday, 21 May 2021

Poplar Hawkmoth




Reasons to be happy this week. The moth trap delivered its highest count of the year, well into double figures at 15 specimens of 12 species. Modest by most peoples standards but given that my last two attempts had delivered two and zero, I was well pleased. Even better we had our first garden Hawkmoth, although I have to confess I missed it completely with Sue finding it late morning whilst dead heading the pansies a couple of metres from where the trap was set. 



Poplar Hawkmoth - Laothoe populi


Brindled Pug was a new moth for me along with the micro Platyedra subcinerea, common name Mallow Crest or Cotton Stem Moth.



Brindled Pug - Eupithecia abbreviata



Platyedra subcinerea


Others were repeats but still welcome and it was just nice to have something to photograph and record for a change.



Flame Shoulder - Ochropleura plecta



Garden Carpet - Xanthorhoe fluctuata



Hart and Dart - Agrotis exclamationis 



Narrow-winged Grey - Eudonia angustea



Rusty-dot Pearl - Udea ferrugalis


There were multiples of Shuttle-shaped Dart, three, and Ruddy Streak, two. It was good to get one of the specimens of the former in such good condition.



Shuttle-shaped Dart - Agrotis puta puta



Ruddy Streak - Tachystola acroxantha



Brimstone Moth - Opisthograptis luteolata


My first Dagger of the year was also in the trap. I found Grey Dagger caterpillars in the garden last year but short of dissecting this moth, which I don't do, I cannot tell if it is a Grey or Dark Dagger.


Dagger agg.- Acronicta agg


Also in near mint condition this Toadflax Brocade. The last one of these I had, looked to be in good condition, but it was very difficult to make out the patterns on the wings.



Toadflax Brocade - Calophasia lunula


I also had difficulty seeing any pattern in this Early Grey. Surprising really when it has been the most common moth in the trap so far this year.


Early Grey - Xylocampa areola



Early Grey - Xylocampa areola


The Muslin Moth is a female, found whilst out looking for butterflies on Kithurst Hill a couple of weeks ago.



Muslin Moth - Diaphora mendica


Also a Caterpillar found in the garden which looks to be a Marbled Green.


Marbled Green Caterpillar - Cryphia muralis




You wait ages to get a decent haul of moths in the trap and then you realise how long it takes to identify and record them all. I am always envious of the people that report three or four hundred but I think, until I get more experience, I will be happy sticking with the low numbers.
 





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