Butterfly Conservation - saving butterflies, moths and their habitats
Butterfly Conservation
saving butterflies, moths and their habitats
   Upper Thames Branch
Join Us
UTB Branch Menu
 » Homepage
 » Introduction & News
 » Conservation
 » Butterfly Sightings
 » Moth Sightings
 » UTB Butterflies
 » UTB Moths
 » Champions
 » Events
 » Sites
 » Your Records
 » Committee/Contacts
 » Sitemap & Updates
Links to the national Butterfly Conservation website
 » BC Membership
 » National Website
 » Other Links

Moth Sightings Archive - January to June 2009

Back to Sightings Archive

~ Wednesday 1st July 2009 ~

Martin Harvey writes: "The Scarlet Summer continues! Reports of Scarlet Tiger seem to be coming in from lots of areas this year. This evening Nina and I were at the Bernard Arms in Great Kimble and there were at least half-a-dozen Scarlet Tigers floating round the pub garden. It seems that this new colony is well-established in the village. A fantastic sight and I can thoroughly recommend the pub as a place to moth-watch at leisure!"

Over the weekend Adam Bassett, Marlow Bottom (Bucks) trapped 340 macro moths of 61 species: "Both Scarce Silver-lines on 26th June and Golden Plusia on 27th June were new for the garden. In addition, the following were year ticks: June 26th: Peach Blossom, Common Emerald, Phoenix, Dark Umber, Lilac Beauty, Scalloped Oak, Swallow-tailed Moth, Iron Prominent, Buff Footman, Common Footman, Flame, Dot Moth, Light Arches, Reddish Light Arches, Beautiful Hook-tip. June 27th: Scorched Carpet, Dun-bar."

Scarce Silver Lines
Photo © Adam Bassett
Golden Plusia
Photo © Adam Bassett

Derek Brown sent this report on 28th June: "Several new moths for the year in our garden at Beenham (Berks) this weekend including a Phoenix which is new for the garden list. I also had a Rosy Footman. First I've seen for a few years."

Rosy Footman
Photo © Derek Brown

Tom and Ian Stevenson ran two moth traps overnight at Ewelme Watercress beds Local Nature Reserve on 27th June: "Both traps were 25w blacklight blue energy saving bulbs. Of interest when putting them out at dusk we were entertained by about 20 Ghost Moths "dancing" over a small meadow. The results of the trapping were: Barred Straw 4,Barred Yellow 1,Beautiful Hook-tip 1,Bright-line Brown Eye 1,Brown Rustic 2, Buff Ermine 1,Buff Tip 1,Burnished Brass 1,Clouded Border 1,Common Footman 3,Common Swift 1,Common Wainscot 6, Coronet 4,Dark Arches 2,Dot Moth 1,Flame 3,Flame Shoulder 3,Green Pug 1,Heart and Dart 2,Hebrew Character 1, Ingrailed Clay 9,Large Fruit Tortrix 1,Large Yellow Underwing 7,Light Emerald 1,Minor (agg.) 1,Poplar Grey 1, Ruby Tiger 1,Rustic Shoulder-knot 1,Small Magpie 1,Small Square Spot 1,Spectacle 1,Treble Lines 1,Turnip 1, Uncertain 4 and Willow Beauty 4. A total of 75 moths of 35 species."

Alastair Driver had a personal record-breaking night with the Robinson trap at Ali's Pond LNR in Sonning on 26th June: "I trapped 48 macro species, pipping the 47 species trapped at the same location on 17th June 2006. New for my parish records were July Highflyer and Pale-shouldered Brocade and new for the site was Common Emerald. Firsts for the year for me were Light Arches, Dun-bar, Miller, Pine Carpet, Small Fan-foot, Bird's Wing, Peppered Moth, Mottled Beauty, Light Emerald, Fan-foot, Buff Arches, Burnished Brass, Double Square-spot, Dark Dagger agg, Common White Wave, Dark Sword-grass, Uncertain, Sycamore, Angles Shades, Clay and Rustic."

Nigel Partridge sent the following from Loosley Row in Bucks: "16-06-09, Acentria ephemerella. Thanks to Peter hall for the ID on this one, it had me stumped. 26-06-09, Archips xylosteana."

David Redhead sent the following on 27th June: "It was no surprise that last night's (26th June) garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, produced my best catch of the year to date with 199 macro-moths from 59 species with a Lunar-spotted Pinion being an all-time first for my garden. It was nice to see a Lobster Moth and a Lilac Beauty again, as I have only ever caught them both once before. The rest of the macros were Mottled Beauty (19), Snout (17), Uncertain/Rustic (16), Light Emerald (13), Dingy Shears (11), Double Square-spot (11), Flame (11), Beautiful Hook-tip (6), Burnished Brass (6), Buff Arches (5), Dun-bar (5), Riband Wave (5), Flame Shoulder (4), Smoky Wainscot (4), Treble Brown Spot (4), Barred Straw (3), Large Yellow Underwing (3), Mottled Rustic (3), Small Fan-footed Wave (3), Straw Dot (3), Blood-vein (2), Brimstone Moth (2), Common White Wave (2), Garden Carpet (2), Green Arches (2), Heart & Dart (2), Poplar Grey (2), Single-dotted Wave (2) and singletons of Bright-line Brown-eye, Buff Ermine, Clouded Border, Common Emerald, Common Footman, Common Wave, Drinker, Fan-foot, Green Pug, Heart & Club, July Highflyer, Light Arches, Marbled Minor agg, Middle-barred Minor, Pale Prominent, Peach Blossom, Peppered Moth, Poplar Hawkmoth, Shuttle-shaped Dart, Small Square-spot, Spectacle, Spruce Carpet, Swallow-tailed Moth, Tawny-barred Angle, Turnip Moth, V Pug and Willow Beauty. Also some pyralids, Ebulea crocealis, Eurrhypara hortulata (12), Phlyctaenia coronata, Udea Olivalis (9) and Udea Prunalis. My 15W Heath trap on the edge of the nearby marshaland caught Drinker (2), Mottled Beauty, Southern Wainscot and Scoparia pyralella.
Eleanor Slade supplied another first sighting for the UTB 2009 Species List from the Oxford University WildCRU/Earthwatch Project in and around Wytham Woods - a July Highflyer caught on 20th June."

~ Monday 29th June 2009 ~

Dave Wilton sent this update on 27th June: "Macro species trapped in the garden at Westcott, Bucks on 26th June comprised Leopard Moth, Lackey, Buff Arches, Peach Blossom, Figure of Eighty, Common Emerald, Blood-vein, Dwarf Cream Wave, Riband Wave, Phoenix, Barred Straw, Barred Yellow, Common Pug, Green Pug, V-Pug, Clouded Border, Scorched Wing, Brimstone Moth, Lilac Beauty, Swallow-tailed Moth, Peppered Moth, Willow Beauty, Mottled Beauty, Engrailed, Common White Wave, Common Wave, Clouded Silver, Light Emerald, Small Elephant Hawk-moth, Elephant Hawk-moth, Swallow Prominent, White Satin, Scarce Footman, Common Footman, Buff Ermine, Heart & Club, Heart & Dart, Flame, Flame Shoulder, Small Square-spot, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Double Square-spot, Large Yellow Underwing, Dot Moth, Bright-line Brown-eye, Brown-line Bright-eye, Clay, Smoky Wainscot, Common Wainscot, Shoulder-striped Wainscot, Poplar Grey, Dagger sp., Coronet, Brown Rustic, Small Angle Shades, Dingy Shears, Lunar-spotted Pinion, Dark Arches, Light Arches, Clouded Brindle, Dusky Brocade, Large Nutmeg, Rustic Shoulder-knot, Marbled Minor sp., Middle-barred Minor, Small Dotted Buff, Uncertain, Rustic, Mottled Rustic, Burnished Brass, Plain Golden Y, Spectacle, Blackneck, Beautiful Hook-tip, Straw Dot, Snout and Fan-foot. The Phoenix was a very welcome addition to my all-time garden list. Equally welcome in the garden on 24th June was a Cabbage Moth, a common species but one that I haven't recorded at Westcott since 2005. Best of the bunch during another productive three-hour session trapping in Bernwood Forest on 22nd June was the stunning Rosy Footman, illustrated below."

Rosy Footman
Photo © Dave Wilton

Dave Maunder ran his garden m.v. trap on 26th June in Aylesbury, Bucks: "I caught 124 moths from 42 macro species, some of the better ones included:- Privet Hawk (1); Poplar Hawk (1); Small Ranunculus (1- my second this year!); Lackey moths (2); Miller moth (1); Figure of 80 (1); Clouded-bordered Brindle (1); Varied Coronet (1); Dingy Shears (2); Swallow-tailed moths (3); Barred Umber (1); Fan-foot (1). In our nearby field I found 60 Eyed Hawk-moth eggs (7 or 8 may have been Poplar Hawk - difficult to tell!) - took me back to my younger days of searching Sallow bushes for Hawks!"

Miller, Lackeys and Figure of 80
Photo © Dave Maunder
Privet Hawk-moth
Photo © Dave Maunder

On 25th June Peter Hall and Dave Wilton ran a moth trap at Pitstone Fen: "Thanks to Mic and Jan Wells for organising access to Pitstone Fen, the evening was highly successful with 100 species so far recorded and still another 15 or so micros to add to the tally whenever I get time to use the microscopes. New additions to the UTB 2009 Species list were:
Argyresthia brockeella, Argyresthia curvella, Scythropia crataegella, Batia unitella, Mompha ochraceella, Agapeta zoegana, Eupoecilia angustana, Hedya salicella, Catoptria pinella, Catoptria falsella, Parapoynx stratiotata, Marasmarcha lunaedactyla, Pterophorus pentadactyla, Scalloped Oak, Yellow-tail, Scarce Footman, Brown-line Bright-eye and Southern Wainscot."

Fern
Photo © Dave Wilton
White Plume
Photo © Peter Hall

Peter Hall ran two moth traps in his Ballinger Common (Bucks) garden recently. The following are the moths which are new to the UTB 2009 Species list:
18/06/09 - Epagoge grotiana, Ditula angustiorana, Short-cloaked, Bird's Wing and Tawny Marbled Minor.
24/06/09 - Purple Clay, Rustic, Coleophora mayrella, Eucosma cana and Teleiodes vulgella
Also June 13th at Ballinger Common a Marbled Minor confirmed via dissection.

Ian Stevenson sent the following on 25th June: "Just to let you know that whilst doing the rounds on BBOWT nature reserves in my job as Berkshire Reserves Officer, we disturbed a nice specimen of a Four-dotted Footman (f. flava) on Wildmoor Heath and a number of Scarlet Tigers at Moor Copse. A quick visit to Hartslock revealed Six-spot Burnet and Yellow Shell."

Malcolm Brownsword sent the following on 25th June: "I recently reported sightings of Scarlet Tiger moths in West Hagbourne, near Didcot. At 9.15 pm last night I walked along a residential road about 100 metres from my house and was surprised to see a large number (probably over 50) of Scarlet Tigers flying around a tall Lawson Cypress at the end of someone's drive. I looked down at the other side of the drive and found a further twenty or so, and over half of these were mating."

Scarlet Tigers
Photo © Malcolm Brownsword
Scarlet Tigers
Photo © Malcolm Brownsword

25th June - Mick A'Court, Butlers X in Bucks, reported the following from the last two weeks:
13/6/09 - The private wood in Bucks produced 29 species of Macro moths including 3 pristine Orange Moths, 8 Light Emeralds a cracking Peach Blossom and 33 Mottled Beauties. My Butlers X garden produced 16 species of Macros of all common species, including 43 Large Nutmegs.
20/6/09 - The private wood was quiet with only 13 macro moth species, the trap being full up with 68 Mottled Beauties!! My Butlers X garden had 23 macro species including 2 Beautiful Golden Ys, a Privet Hawk Moth, a Least Carpet and a Light Arches. Whilst working at Gallows Bridge Farm that week I found a Double Dart.
22/06/09 - Two traps at the Ragpits produced 40 species of macros, including 2 x Small Elephant Hawk Moths, 1 x Netted Pug, 3 x Green Silverlines, 3 x Ferns, 18 x Reddish Light Arches, 2 x Lobster Moths, 1 x Tawny-barred Angle, 2 x Purple Bars, 2 x Willow Beauties and lurking in with the 21 Mottled Beauties were 2 x Dark Umbers and a Brown Scallop. My Butlers X garden had 24 macros including 1 x Common Emerald, 1 x Turnip Moth, 1 x Fern, 1 x Green Pug, 2 Double Square Spots and a Plain Golden Y.
23/06/09 - Whilst working at Gallows Bridge farm on 23rd, I found a Lunar Hornet Moth, which I though was a Hornet when I first saw it flying around, but fortunately it landed so I could get a closer look."

~ Thursday 25th June 2009 ~

Alastair Driver says he had an excellent session with the Robinson trap on 22nd June at home in Sonning, Berks: "I caught 30 macro species of which Blue-bordered Carpet was new for my parish records and Phoenix a new garden record. Firsts for the year were Brown Silver-line, Buff-tip, Poplar Grey, Common Emerald, Coronet, Common Wainscot, Common Footman, Elephant Hawk-moth, Swallow-tailed Moth, Beautiful Hook-tip and Lozotaeniodes formosanus."

Eleanor Slade and David Redhead have reported that the Oxford University WildCRU/Earthwatch Project traps in and around Wytham Woods, Oxon, have caught the following macro-moths which are potentially additions to the UTB 2009 list:
22nd June Blue-bordered Carpet (first adult - several), Dun-bar, Ghost (female) and Lackey (2), Ghost (female); 24th June Gothic, Lilac Beauty and Small Angle Shades.

Gothic
Photo © David Redhead

24th June - Clive Briffett says he saw this Silver-ground Carpet in a field off Hinksey Hill, Oxon, this week.

Silver-ground Carpet
Photo © Clive Briffett

Chris Brown sent this report on 23rd June: "I have borrowed a moth book by Chris Manley, a photographic guide, to help with some recent observations I've made:
College Lake BBOWT 16/06/09 Chimney Sweeper (no photo)
Millennium Field, SU 714 792, 21/06/09, Forester Moth
Millennium Field, SU 714 792, 21/06/09, Mullein moth caterpillar on buddleia
Decoy Heath BBOWT 22/06/09, Six-spot Burnet caterpillar
Lodden Reserve BBOWT, 22/06/09, Anthophila fabriciana/Nettle-tap (not in the book).
As I had only planted the buddleias at the Millennium Field a few weeks ago, it was quite rewarding to see them being used by wildlife before flowering. My wife and I spent a couple of hours at Moor Copse in the morning and then moved on to Decoy Heath and there were many of the Six-spot Burnet caterpillars thereabouts. Lodden Reserve in the afternoon produced many examples of the tiny Nettle-tap micro-moth."

Forester Moth
Photo © Chris Brown
Mullein Moth caterpillar
Photo © Chris Brown

Six-spot Burnet caterpillar
Photo © Chris Brown
Anthophila fabriciana (Nettle-tap)
Photo © Chris Brown

Tony Towner ran his garden trap in Tilehurst (Reading, Berks) on 12th June and caught the following: Small Magpie (1); Figure of Eighty (1); Flame Shoulder (1); Sycamore (1); Heart and Dart (24); Varied Coronet (1); Peppered Moth (1); Dark Arches (1); Elephant Hawkmoth (1); Large Yellow Underwing (2); Willow Beauty (1); Treble Lines (1); Tawny Marbled Minor agg. (1); Purple Bar (1); Common Marbled Carpet (1); Chrysoteuchia culmella (1); Green Pug (1); Small Elephant Hawkmoth (1); Aphomia sociella (1); Bright-line Brown-eye (1); Straw Dot (1); Pale Mottled Willow (1); Dusky Brocade (1); Shears (1);

Sycamore
Photo © Tony Towner
Pale Mottled Willow
Photo © Tony Towner

This report came from Dave Wilton: "A trapping session in Bernwood Forest on 16th June produced several species which were new for me for the year, including Drinker, Lackey (first adult), Buff Arches, Treble Brown Spot, Lilac Beauty, Four-dotted Footman and Green Silver-lines, while I also got another Common Fan-foot. My next "away visit" was to Chinkwell Wood near Brill, Bucks on 21st June. 55 macro species came to the trap and they included Barred Red and Clay which may still be new to the UTB list. I also got a rather battered example of the dark form of Tawny-barred Angle which I've not seen before. On 22nd June at Westcott, Bucks I had further success with pheromones in the garden, getting a single Currant Clearwing to the TIP lure in about 20 minutes."

Barred Red
Photo © Dave Wilton
Currant Clearwing
Photo © Dave Wilton

~ Sunday 21st June 2009 ~

Adam Bassett, Marlow Bottom, Bucks says he had 2 new garden ticks over the weekend: "Haworth's Pug (19th) and Broom Moth (20th) - thanks to Peter Hall and Martin Albertini for the latter with a rather worn specimen. Year ticks included Small Fan-footed Wave (19th), Riband Wave (19th), Fern (20th) and Coxcomb Prominent (20th). Thanks to Peter Hall the following micros were also confirmed, all on the 20th: Aleimma loeflingiana, Dipleurina lacustrata and Lozotaenia forsterana."

Haworth's Pug
Photo © Adam Bassett

Tim Watts wrote the following on 21st June: "Colleen had good views of a Hummingbird Hawkmoth feeding on Red Valerian in our Whitchurch (Bucks) garden at 12:30 today."

Tom Stevenson put his Blacklight moth trap out in his Benson, Oxon garden on 20th June with the following totals: Heart and Dart (8), Small Magpie, Heart and Club (3), Large Yellow Underwing, Varied Coronet, Willow Beauty, Uncertain (3), Minor spp. and a micro which I believe to be a Lozotaenia forsterana but, having no experience and no book, would like confirmation." [Thanks to Peter Hall who has subsequently confirmed the id as Lozotaenia forsterana.]

Varied Coronet
Photo © Tom Stevenson
Lozotaenia forsterana
Photo © Tom Stevenson

David Redhead's overnight garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, on 19th June contained four new species for his garden this year: Buff Arches, Large Twin-spot Carpet, Smoky Wainscot and Turnip.

Malcolm Brownsword sent the following on 19th June: "On 17, 18 and 19 June I have seen at least one Scarlet Tiger moth in my garden at West Hagbourne, near Didcot. The image below is of one of the two I saw together in flight at 9.15 this morning, before this one settled on my privet hedge."

Scarlet Tiger
Photo © Malcolm Brownsword

Martin Townsend, Littlemore, Oxon sent this report: "I was leaving the house at dusk last night (18th June) and there were a few moths feeding at the Red Valerian. Most were Silver Y but I noticed a smaller one. Thinking it was probably f. gammina I peered closer and I was surprised to see that it looked in the gloom like a Small Ranunculus. It settled briefly and I was able to catch it in my hand, and it turned out I was correct. As far as I know this is the first VC23 record, but I haven't had time to scrutinize all the records I have been sent so there may have been others."

Dave Maunder ran his garden trap on 17th June in Aylesbury, Bucks and caught: "Small Ranunculus (1) - a good catch, so Peter Hall tells me!; Figure of 80 (1); Pale Tussocks (2); Varied Coronet (1); Light Arches (3); Dark Arches (5); Large Nutmegs (40); Rustic Shoulder-knots (9); Vine's Rustic (1); Heart and Darts (18); Turnip moth (1); Flame Shoulders (2); Common Wainscot (1); Buff Ermine (1); Dot moth (1); Cabbage moths (2); Bright-line Brown-eye (3); Large Yellow Underwing (1); Middle-barred Minor (1); Marbled Minors agg. (4); Swallow-tailed moth (1 - my earliest ever!); Brimstone moth (1); Willow Beauty (1); Silver-ground Carpets (2); Garden Carpets (2); Riband Waves (3); Green Oak Tortrix (1); Bee moth (1) and Small Magpies (3)."

Small Ranunculus
Photo © Dave Maunder

Nigel Partridge reported the following: "I've one more to add to the list: Luquetia lobella, 16-06-09, Loosley Row, Bucks. Thanks to Peter Hall for confirming the ID."

~ Wednesday 17th June 2009 ~

Eleanor Slade sent the following report today, 17th June: "This morning, 17th June, the Oxford University WildCRU/Earthwatch Project recorded a Gold Spot at Stroud Copse, two Pretty Chalk Carpets at Simpsons Cottages and a Buff Arches at Higgins Copse near Wytham Woods."

Peter Hall ran his garden moth trap in Ballinger Common, Bucks, on 13th June with the following results: Anthophila fabriciana,Scrobipalpa costella,Pandemis cerasana,Pandemis heparana, Pseudargyrotoza conwagana,Tortrix viridana,Celypha lacunana,Hedya nubiferana,Epiblema roborana, Crambus pascuella,Crambus lathoniellus,Eurrhypara hortulata,Udea olivalis,Aphomia sociella, Peach Blossom,Maiden's Blush,Blood-vein,Treble Brown Spot,Flame Carpet,Silver-ground Carpet,Garden Carpet,Common Carpet, Small Phoenix,Common Marbled Carpet,Barred Yellow,Spruce Carpet,Broken-barred Carpet,Foxglove Pug, Mottled Pug,Green Pug,Small White Wave,Scorched Wing,Brimstone Moth,Willow Beauty,Mottled Beauty,Clouded Silver, Light Emerald,Privet Hawk,Lime Hawk,Eyed Hawk,Elephant Hawk,Lobster,Orange Footman,Common Footman (first adult), White Ermine,Buff Ermine,Heart & Dart,Flame,Flame Shoulder,Large Yellow Underwing,Ingrailed Clay,Small Square-spot, Setaceous Hebrew Character,Common Wainscot,Shoulder-striped Wainscot,Clouded-bordered Brindle,Clouded Brindle, Large Nutmeg,Rustic Shoulder-knot,Middle-barred Minor,Treble Lines,Vine's Rustic,Green Silver-lines,Burnished Brass, Beautiful Golden Y,Plain Golden Y,Spectacle,Beautiful Hook-tip,Straw Dot and Small Fan-foot.

Dave Wilton reported the following on 16th June: "New species for the year seen over the past few days have included Elophila nymphaeata/Brown China-mark at Westcott on 12th June, Assara terebrella and Myelois circumvoluta/Thistle Ermine both at Waddesdon Manor on 12th June, Apotomis turbidana, Epermenia falciformis, Barred Yellow, Blotched Emerald, Bordered White, Buff Arches, Gold Swift, Minor Shoulder-knot, Small Dotted Buff and Tawny-barred Angle all at Finemere Wood on 13th June and Blastobasis adustella, Orthopygia glaucinalis, Blackneck, Common Footman, Dusky Brocade, Garden Tiger (first adult), Light Arches and Uncertain all at Westcott on 14th June. The Garden Tiger is a very welcome addition to my all-time garden list, a species I haven't seen in Bucks since the 1960s! On 15th June at Westcott I had my first success using pheromones and managed to add Orange-tailed Clearwing to the garden list, two males being attracted to the VES lure within ten minutes."

Garden Tiger
Photo © Dave Wilton
Orange-tailed Clearwing
Photo © Dave Wilton

David Redhead's overnight garden moth trap (125W Robinson) in Littlemore, Oxon on 12th June attracted 162 macro-moths from 52 species: "Perhaps not surprising as the minimum overnight temperature was 14.0C. This included 13 species new to my garden this year - Common Emerald, Common Pug (2), Dark Arches, Dingy Shears, Eyed Hawkmoth, Green Arches, Light Emerald (5), Obscure Wainscot, Peach Blossom, Peppered Moth, Poplar Grey (2), Small Fan-foot and Vine's Rustic (2). I also ran my recently acquired 15W Heath trap on the edge of the marshland near my house - this caught 4 Obscure Wainscot, a Pinion-streaked Snout and a Heart & Club. The 4 Obscure Wainscot in the marshland trap were all dead ringers, in size and markings, for Richard Lewington's illustration in the "Field Guide to the Moths of Gt Britain & Ireland" (see photo). However, the one in the garden trap was much larger and plainer - at first I entertained thoughts of it being one of the closest taxonomic relatives to the Obscure Wainscot which would have been an all-time newcomer to the UTB list - sadly expert eyes put me right!"

Green Arches
Photo © David Redhead
Obscure Wainscot
Photo © David Redhead
Eyed Hawkmoth
Photo © David Redhead

Jan Haseler says that on 14th June there were 2 Chimney Sweeper moths at BBOWT's Inkpen Crocus Field reserve. "As far as I can tell, this is the first Berkshire record of Chimney Sweeper since 1982."

Adam Bassett sent this report from Marlow Bottom, Bucks: "Having not trapped for a couple of weeks, 2 garden traps over the weekend produced the following new year ticks:
June 12th - Barred Yellow, Uncertain
June 13th - 1st 2 Mochas of the season, Blotched Emerald, Maple Prominent, Dark Arches.
With help from Peter Hall the following micros were seen:
12th June: Triaxomera parasitella, Pandemis heparana, Celypha striana
13th June: Prays fraxinella, Epiblema uddmanniana (Brambleshoot moth), Ephestia parasitella.
Also, the following caterpillars were seen in the garden: on 31st May - Common Quaker, Hebrew Character and on 1st June - Copper Underwing."

Mocha
Photo © Adam Bassett
Blotched Emerald
Photo © Adam Bassett

Nigel Partridge, Loosley Row, Bucks writes: "Here are a couple more recent sightings: Reddish Light Arches on 12-06-09 and Pretty Chalk Carpet on 13-06-09."

On 12th June Dave Maunder ran his garden moth trap in Aylesbury, Bucks: "I got 128 moths of 35 species, some of which were:- Obscure Wainscot (1- a first for my garden); Clouded-bordered Brindle (1); Pale Tussock (1); White Ermine (1); Large Nutmeg (44); Heart and Dart (15); Treble Lines (1); Light Arches (1) and Burnished Brass (1). Also seen in our nearby field on 11th June were 22 Puss Moth larvae, all first instar, and another 6 unhatched eggs - all found on small Sallow shrubs - I wonder how many will succumb to birds?"

Obscure Wainscot
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Friday 12th June 2009 ~

David Redhead sent this news today, 12th June: "This morning's training session for the Oxford University WildCRU/Earthwatch Project produced two pristine Green Arches and a Drinker moth (first adult) from 5 overnight 6W Heath traps at Wytham Woods, Oxon."

Nigel Partridge sent the following from Loosley Row, Bucks on 11th June: "I saw this Hummingbird Hawkmoth feeding on the Centranthus this afternoon and it stayed around for long enough to get a few shots. I look forward to seeing more of them in the coming months."

Hummingbird Hawkmoth
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Dave Wilton sent this report on 11th June: "A walk through BBOWT's Lapland Farm Meadows, Bucks today produced Crambus lathoniellus (2), Opsibotys fuscalis (7), Forester (1), Yellow Shell (4), Grass Rivulet (2), Silver Y (5), Mother Shipton (2), Burnet Companion (4) and Straw Dot (1) as well as a single unidentified Burnet. At Doddershall Meadows, Bucks, which is a private open-access site adjacent to the railway line due west of Quainton, I found Six-spot Burnet (first adult) (1), Silver Y (2) and Straw Dot (2)."

~ Wednesday 10th June 2009 ~

David Redhead reported the following today, 10th: "In between the deluges in Oxford today there was a short-lived spell when the sun broke through during which I went up to the grassland near my house in Littlemore to check up on the Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnet colony I have reported on previously. My count, before the start of the next deluge drove me back home, was 90 including 8 mating pairs. A few of the individual ones were nectaring on hawkweeds but most were static on vegetation, more often than not, near an evacuated cocoon. I was surprised to find one caterpillar which had still not got round to pupating. Also seen: one Cinnabar, two Straw Dots, a male and female Common Blue and a Large Skipper."

Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnets pr.
Photo © David Redhead
Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnets
Photo © David Redhead

On 9th June Dave Wilton's MV trap at Westcott, Bucks produced 350 moths of 60 species: "There were no surprises amongst the macro-moths, with Large Yellow Underwing, Light Brocade, Pale Mottled Willow, Beautiful Hook-tip and Fan-foot being new for this year's garden list. However, amongst the micros were definitely two and possibly three that were entirely new for the garden, taking my all-time list past 620 species. The best of the bunch was a rather pretty but sad-looking tortrix with an unpronouncable name, Phtheochroa rugosana (photo below), while perhaps I shouldn't advertise the fact that Tineola bisselliella, otherwise known as the Common Clothes Moth, was another! The third was a Coleophorid that I hope was Coleophora betulella, which would figure because the trap is situated beneath four silver birches, but it will need the services of Peter Hall's microscope to confirm because there are other similar species. On 1st June I had Aphelia paleana (the Timothy Tortrix) as another garden first-timer. It also appeared on the 7th and again on the 9th when three came to the trap. This rather plain-looking moth of rough grassland seems to be much more abundant than usual this year."

Phtheochroa rugosana
Photo © Dave Wilton
Possible Coleophora betulella
Photo © Dave Wilton

Anni Byard & John Moreno found these Mullein Moth larvae on Verbascum plants in their garden in Long Wittenham, near Didcot in Oxfordshire today, 10th June.

Mullein Moth caterpillar
Photo © Anni Byard & John Moreno
Mullein Moth caterpillars
Photo © Anni Byard & John Moreno

Nigel Partridge reported these moths today: "Here are two more for the year list, both from our garden in Loosley Row, Bucks - Blastobasis lacticolella on 08-06-09 and Fern on 09-06-09."

David Redhead reported the following from Littlemore, Oxon: "My third garden moth trap in June (on the 8th) added 8 macro-moth species to my 2009 garden list - Beautiful Golden-Y, Broken-barred Carpet, Common Wave, Large Yellow Underwing (2), Mottled Beauty (4), Round-winged Muslin, Scorched Wing and Treble Brown Spot. The most numerous moth amongst the other 23 species was the Heart & Dart with 11. Three overnight 6W Heath traps run on the 8th June in the margins of arable fields east of Deddington, North Oxon produced between them - 1 Barred Straw, 5 Buff Ermine, 1 Common Carpet, 1 Common Marbled Carpet, 8 Common Swift, 3 Common Wainscot, 2 Double Square-spot, 3 Green Carpet, 1 Heart & Dart, 7 Large Nutmeg, 4 Marbled Minor agg, 2 Mottled Beauty, 1 Mottled Pug, 1 Poplar Hawkmoth, 3 Rustic Shoulder-knot, 2 Setaceous Hebrew Character, 1 Silver-ground Carpet, 1 Silver-Y and 12 Small Square-spot."

Dave Wilton sent this update on 8th June: "Further sightings from my area of mid-west Bucks over the past ten days which might not yet have reached the UTB list include Agapeta hamana (2/6), Anthophila fabriciana/Nettle-tap Moth (4/6), Aphelia paleana/Timothy Tortrix (1/6), Chrysoteuchia culmella (28/5), Epinotia bilunana (2/6), Nematopogon metaxella (4/6), Light Emerald (2/6), Orange Moth (31/5), Poplar Lutestring (2/6), Small Clouded Brindle (1/6) and Small Yellow Wave (2/6)."

Alastair Driver says he had a good session with the Robinson trap at home in Sonning, Berks on 2nd June: "New for my yearlist (mainly because I haven't done much trapping lately!) were - Snout, Treble Brown-spot, Marbled Minor agg., Middle-barred Minor, Silver y, Pale Tussock, Green Pug, Common Pug, Foxglove Pug, Mottled Pug, Spectacle, Buff Ermine, Vine's Rustic, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Common Marbled Carpet, Rustic Shoulder-knot, Straw Dot. Also caught the following micros: Archips podana, Cydia pomonella, Phlyctaenia perlucidalis, Pandemis cerasana, Epiphyas postvittana, Tortrix viridana, Hedya nubiferana."

~ Friday 5th June 2009 ~

David Redhead sent this update from Littlemore, Oxon on 5th June: "Two early June overnight garden moth traps have nearly doubled my 2009 garden list and added two species to my all-time garden list - Striped Hawkmoth and Green Silver-lines. New for the UTB 2009 list are Beautiful Hook-tip, Campion, Double Square-spot, Freyer's Pug, Small Seraphim and Perinephela lancealis (all on the 2nd June) and Heart & Club (4th June). I note that the Chimney Sweeper is not on the list yet - I know Jim Asher saw 3 at the Salden Wood d/r/w cutting in Bucks on 25th May."

Campion
Photo © David Redhead
Green Silver-lines
Photo © David Redhead
Striped Hawkmoth
Photo © David Redhead

Nigel Partridge sent the following today: "A Privet Hawkmoth on 04-06-09 here in Loosley Row, Bucks."

Privet Hawkmoth
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Mick A'Court sent this report today: "On Saturday 30th May a private wood in west Bucks produced 18 species including Brindled White Spot, Pale-shouldered Brocade, Scorched Wing, Brown Rustic and a May Highflyer. Tuesday 2nd June my Butlers Cross, Bucks garden produced 32 species including a Privet Hawk-moth, a Small Elephant Hawk Moth, a Bright-line Brown-eye and 147 Large Nutmegs!! I took 19 of them round to Martin Harvey for a second opinion and he agreed on the ID. Martin said that both he and Ched George had also caught high numbers of these on the same night."

May Highflyer
Photo © Mick A'Court

John Parsons writes: "On the canal towpath west of Newbury, Berks on 4th June I found this Scarlet Tiger (first adult) inflating its wings."

Scarlet Tiger
Photo © John Parsons

Ched George, Radnage, Bucks caught 277+ moths overnight on 3rd June, so 300+ in reality: "There were 53 species of macro, including 52 Large Nutmeg, 11 Rustic Shoulder Knot, 1 possible Small Clouded Brindle."

~ Wednesday 3rd June 2009 ~

David Redhead visited Slade Camp on 2nd June: "Moths seen were Burnet Companion, Silver-Y and two Yellow Shells. Then back at home (Littlemore, Oxon) a dog walk up the top produced several Burnet Companions and evidence that the first of "my" 1,000 Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnet moth (first adult) cocoons has emerged which is rather early as the books say late June."

Nigel Partridge writes: "This is a new species for our garden: Alabonia geoffrella, 02-06-09, Loosley Row, Bucks."

Alabonia geoffrella
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Adam Bassett found a Small Dusty Wave resting in his parent's porch in Hurst Berks, on June 2nd.

Colin Everett (Herts) sent the following: "Monday 1st June: "On rough ground at Lodge Lane nr Chorleywood/ Little Chalfont (Bucks) TQ 00 96, a Burnet Companion and a Cinnabar were present."

Jan Haseler sent this report: "Found on the Reading and District Natural History Society's field trip to BBOWT's Dry Sandford Pit, Oxon reserve on Sunday 31st May: Rannoch Looper - a new VC22 county record, identified from the photographs by Martin Harvey and confirmed by Martin Townsend. Also a web of Spindle Ermine caterpillars."

Rannoch Looper
Photo © Jan Haseler

Peter Hall ran a moth trap at Dancersend in Bucks on 31st May with the following results: Common Swift, Map-winged Swift, Aspilapteryx tringipennella, Syndemis musculana, Pseudargyrotoza conwagana, Eulia ministrana, Tortrix viridana, Celypha lacunana, Strophedra weirana, Cydia fagiglandana, Crambus lathoniellus, Udea olivalis, Barred Hook-tip, Peach Blossom, Little Emerald, Silver-ground Carpet, Purple Bar, Small Phoenix, Common Marbled Carpet, Broken-barred Carpet, Green Carpet, Foxglove Pug, Scorched Carpet, Brown Silver-line, Scorched Wing, Brimstone Moth, Scalloped Hazel, Waved Umber, Pale Oak Beauty, Brindled White-spot, White-pinion Spotted, Clouded Silver, Lime Hawk, Coxcomb Prominent, Marbled Brown, Pale Tussock, Orange Footman, Small Square-spot, Clouded-bordered Brindle, Rustic Shoulder-knot, Middle-barred Minor, Treble Lines, Marbled White Spot, Green Silver-lines, Nut-tree Tussock, Silver Y, Beautiful Golden Y, Plain Golden Y, Straw Dot and Small Fan-foot.

Little Emerald
Photo © Peter Hall
Peach Blossom
Photo © Peter Hall
Map-wingedSwift
Photo © Peter Hall

Adam Bassett sent this report from Marlow Bottom, Bucks: "Some recent garden year list additions from May 30th: Green Oak Tortrix, Large Yellow Underwing (first adult), Coronet, Clouded Brindle, Middle-barred Minor. I have attached a photo of the Coronet, which I think shows the form f. coronula. I would say that nearly all the Coronets I record in the garden are of this form."

Coronet f. coronula
Photo © Adam Bassett

~ Saturday 30th May 2009 ~

Dave Wilton writes: "A trapping session at Brill, Bucks on 28th May produced an immigrant Striped Hawk-moth, the highlight of the year for me so far. Other new species for the year there included Flame, Miller, Mottled Rustic & Small Fan-foot."

Striped Hawk-moth
Photo © Dave Wilton

Tom Stevenson sent this moth report from Benson, Oxon, today: "Ran my 25w blacklight trap overnight on 25 May with the following results: Pale Tussock, Treble Lines (5), White Ermine, Oak Hook-tip, Heart and Dart (3), Garden Carpet, Green Pug, Nut-tree Tussock, Small Square Spot, Middle Barred Minor, Pale Mottled Willow and Large Nutmeg (2)."

~ Friday 29th May 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge reported these moth sightings: Blood-vein 26-05-09, Elephant Hawkmoth 26-05-09, plus Bucculatrix nigricomella (new to the All-Time UTB Moth Species List) and Hedya pruniana, both from 22-05-09. Thanks to Peter Hall for confirming the ID of these two."

This update came from Adam Bassett today: "Some recent year list additions from the garden from May 27th: Treble Brown Spot, Purple Bar, Ingrailed Clay, Marbled White Spot, Snout, Small Fan-foot. Courtesy of Peter Hall a micro from 24th May: Hedya pruniana."

On 26th May Mick & Wendy Campbell went to the Devil's Punchbowl, a chalk downland site just off the Ridgeway near Wantage: "We had found the caterpillar of a Wood Tiger here last year and thought we would look for the adult moth this year. We were very pleased to find 6 Wood Tiger moths on the wing, flying in sunshine but being blown quickly away by strong, gusty wind."

Wood Tiger
Photo © Wendy Campbell
Wood Tiger
Photo © Wendy Campbell

Danny Howard sent this report today: "I've had a couple of IDs from my garden in Cowley, Oxon, confirmed by Peter Hall - Middle-barred Minor on 22nd May and Grass Rivulet and Common Marbled Carpet on the 24th. Also, a Scarlet Tiger hatched today (one of three caterpillars I rescued from the garden near the plain in case the Comfrey was sprayed like it was last year). Have been keeping the pupae inside so obviously not a 'first sighting' but a beautiful moth all the same."

Middle-barred Minor
Photo © Danny Howard
Grass Rivulet
Photo © Danny Howard

Pale Tussock
Photo © Danny Howard
Scarlet Tiger
Photo © Danny Howard

Tony Towner ran his garden trap in Tilehurst on 22nd May: "Here are my sightings: Spectacle (1); Shuttle-shaped Dart (3); Epiphyas postvittana (Light-brown Apple Moth) (3); Flame Shoulder (2); Peppered Moth (1); Common Marbled Carpet (4); Heart and Dart (2); Setaceous Hebrew Character (1); Treble Lines (1); Epiblema cynosbatella (picture attached) (1); White-spotted Pug (1); Mottled Pug (1); I also took home an unidentified caterpillar from the Dolphin school at Hurst and successfully reared it into a Ptycholoma lecheana micro moth on 24th May (picture attached). I also saw my first Silver Y of the season in my garden on 25th May."

Ptycholoma lecheana
Photo © Tony Towner
Epiblema cynosbatella
Photo © Tony Towner

Adam Bassett ran his Marlow Bottom, Bucks, garden moth trap on 22nd May and 24th May, producing the following: "Nothing too exciting, but Brown Silver-line was new for the garden and 11 Orange Footman is my largest catch of this species.
Common Swift, Garden Pebble (Evergestis forficalis) (24/5), Udea Olivalis (24/5), Bee Moth, Oak Hook-tip, Pebble Hook-tip, Maiden's Blush, Clay Triple-lines, Blood-vein (24/5), Red Twin-spot Carpet sp, Silver-ground Carpet, Garden Carpet, Common Marbled Carpet, Broken-barred Carpet, Green Carpet, Mottled Pug, Common Pug, Brindled Pug, Green Pug (24/5), Treble-bar, Brown Silver-line, Scorched Wing, Brimstone Moth, Scalloped Hazel, Peppered Moth, Willow Beauty, Pale Oak Beauty, Engrailed, White-pinion Spotted, Clouded Silver, Buff-tip, Pale Tussock, Orange Footman, White Ermine, Buff Ermine, Least Black Arches, Flame Shoulder, Small Square-spot, Setaceous Hebrew Character, Shears, Light Brocade, Bright-line Brown-eye, Common Wainscot, Large Nutmeg, Rustic Shoulder-knot, Marbled Minor agg., Treble Lines, Green Silver-lines, Nut-tree Tussock and Straw Dot. Also from May 24th was this Epiblema cynosbatella."

Epiblema cynosbatella
Photo © Adam Bassett

Dave Wilton reported the following on 26th May: "I've got a bit of catching up to do after a busy week in Bucks: in Finemere Wood on 19th May I found the micro-moths Micropterix calthella (20) and Glyphipterix simpliciella (2) sharing the buttercup flowers. A check of the buttercups around Westcott on 22nd May produced Glyphipterix simpliciella (302) but then I lost interest in counting them! There must have been many hundreds more of these tiny beasts. In Bernwood Forest on 22nd May I got 55 moth species to two traps, of which Little Emerald, Birch Mocha, Small White Wave, Barred Umber, Brindled White-spot, Poplar Kitten and Beautiful Golden Y may still be new to the UTB list. A day-time visit to the disused railway line near Salden Wood, Bucks on 23rd May produced the pretty tortricoid moths Lathronympha strigana and Commophila aeneana, while trapping in the grounds of Waddesdon Manor that night brought in very few species but they did include Tinea trinotella and Grass Rivulet. In Bernwood Meadows on 24th May I saw my first Forester of the year, while my trapping destination the same evening was back at the Salden Wood railway cutting where the moths included Elachista argentella, Cochylis atricapitana, Hedya nubiferana/Marbled Orchard Tortrix, Hedya pruniana/Plum Tortrix, Latticed Heath and Mottled Beauty. The Latticed Heath was a bit of a surprise as this is normally thought of as a day-flying species, but I see that the text books do say that it also flies at night. On 25th May a visit to the site at Greatmoor, where last year I discovered a colony of Five-spot Burnet moths, was successful and produced one specimen flying around. Duly photographed, it was again an example with the spots fused (sub-species palustrella, form minoides). Finally, despite the rain, trapping in our garden at Westcott that night produced the first really good catch of the year with 68 species coming to a single MV light. They included Adela croesella, Esperia sulphurella, Bactra lancealana, Opsibotys fuscalis, Elephant Hawk-moth, Pale-shouldered Brocade, Shoulder-striped Wainscot, Large Nutmeg, Middle-barred Minor and Straw Dot."

Birch Mocha
Photo © Dave Wilton
Five-spot Burnet
Photo © Dave Wilton

On 25th May Dave Maunder and his wife took a stroll around nearby fields to their house in Aylesbury: We found: Puss moth eggs (8); Small Yellow Underwing (1); Silver y (3). On 24th May I ran my garden m.v. and got: Buff-tip (1); Pale Tussock (1); Pale Oak Beauty (1 - unusual for my garden!); Large Nutmegs (11); Rustic Shoulder-knots (7); Heart and Darts (3); Flame moth (1); Bright-line Brown-eye (2); Marbled Minor agg (1); Waved Umber (1); Common Marbled Carpet (1); Garden Carpets (5); Brimstone (1); Brindled Pug (3); Tawny Speckled Pug (1) and Bee moth (1). Other moths found this morning (25th) included: Poplar Kitten (1); Figure of 80 (1); Waved Umber (1); Pale Prominent (1), and Turnip moth (1). So, a good day's spotting!"

Puss Moth eggs
Photo © Dave Maunder
Small Yellow Underwing
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Wednesday 27th May 2009 ~

Ched George says he caught a Common Rustic agg. in his trap in Radnage, Bucks on the 24th May. A single Grass Rivulet was a good record.

Mick A'Court sent the following report on 26th May: "I have the following to report from the last 7 days or so and some photos.
Thurs 21st Butlers X garden - only 8 species with Pebble Prominent a new species for the garden.
Fri 22nd at the private wood near Grendon Underwood - produced 16 species including Great Prominent, Scorched Wing and my first Poplar Hawk Moths of the year.
Sun 24th at the Ragpits running two 40W Actinic traps - produced 37 species including 4 Orange Footman, 1 Marbled Coronet, 1 White-pinion Spotted, 1 Shuttle-shaped Dart, 1 Clouded-bordered Brindle, a superb looking pristine Burnished Brass and a similarly pristine Straw Dot.
Other recent sightings whilst working at BBOWT's Gallows Bridge Farm reserve include 1 Small Yellow Underwing, 1 Burnet Companion, 5 Nemophora degeerella, 1 Figure of Eight caterpillar, 1 Common Footman caterpillar and 1 Dingy Footman caterpillar.
On Sunday afternoon (24th) at Otmoor a group of us found a Garden Tiger caterpillar."

Figure of Eight caterpillar
Photo © Mick A'Court
Marbled Coronet
Photo © Mick A'Court
Straw Dot
Photo © Mick A'Court

Nigel Partridge, Loosley Row, Bucks says it's been very busy over the last few nights: "I'm sure you've probably received records of some of these already, but here goes!
20-05-09 - Caloptilia syringella, Common Swift
21-05-09 - Pebble Hook-tip
22-05-09 - Clouded Silver, Broken-barred Carpet, Tinea trinotella, Hofmannophila pseudospretella, Silver Y, Pseudoswammerdamia combinella, White-pinion Spotted, Middle-barred Minor, Large Nutmeg
23-05-09 - Foxglove Pug, Green Silver-lines, Scorched Wing, Heart and Dart, Buff Ermine
24-05-09 - Silver-ground Carpet, Epiphyas postvittana, Eurrhypara hortulata, Netted Pug, Aglossa pinguinalis, Green Carpet, Scorched Carpet, Pale Mottled Willow, Clouded-bordered Brindle, Pyralis farinalis
25-05-09 - Clay Triple-lines, Grass Rivulet, Hummingbird Hawkmoth
and a few more micros still to be checked!"

~ Sunday 24th May 2009 ~

Danny Howard has finally been able to get trapping again after a frustrating week waiting for a new bulb to arrive: "This time I have the proper MV as opposed to the blended bulb with a noticeable difference! Recent sightings in my garden in Cowley, Oxon, include:
22nd May, 3 Flame Shoulder, Heart & Dart, Willow Beauty, Orange Footman, Treble Lines and 2 Garden Carpet. Also a possible Middle-Barred Minor (awaiting confirmation along with a couple of other unknowns).
23rd May, Small Magpie, Brimstone, 5 Flame Shoulder, Spectacle, Lime Hawkmoth, 2 Scalloped Hazel, Scorched Wing, Green Carpet, Treble Lines and Setaceous Hebrew Character.
24th May, Similar to previous evenings plus Pale Tussock and Figure of Eighty."

Jan Haseler did the Lardon Chase butterfly transect this morning, 24th May, and saw these moths: 1 Silver Y, plus Thisanotia chrysonuchella, Crambus lathoniellus and Crambus perlella.

24th May - Dave Maunder says he's seen the following moths in Aylesbury, Bucks, recently: "Pale Tussocks (5); Spectacle (1); Peppered moth (1, 22nd); Waved Umber (1); Silver-ground Carpet (1); Brimstone (1); Burnet Companion (1); Garden Carpet (1) and a Six-spot Burnet larva. On 21st May I caught a few moths in my garden trap (in Aylesbury) which were - Pale Prominent (1); Pale Pinion (1); Spectacle (1); Rustic Shoulder-knot (2); Brimstone moths (2)."

Jan Haseler reports that Members on the BBOWT walk to Paices Wood near Aldermaston (Berks) on Saturday 23rd May had an excellent opportunity to watch butterflies and day-flying moths: "The moths included Drab Looper, Silver-ground Carpet, lots of Speckled Yellows, Burnet Companion, Mother Shipton and Lesser Treble-bar."

Derek Brown, Beenham in Berks, had a Snout on 22nd May which is new for the 2009 UTB list.

Tom & Ian Stevenson ran three traps at Ewelme Watercress Beds LNR on 22nd May and the following is a list of the species and numbers caught: Brimstone 3, Buff Ermine 2, Burnished Brass 1, Chinese Character 1, Cinnabar 1, Clouded-bordered Brindle 1, Common Marbled Carpet 1, Common Pug 1, Common Quaker 1, Common Wainscot 12, Coronet 1, Dagger (agg) 2, Eyed Hawkmoth 1, Figure of Eighty 1, Flame Shoulder 32, Foxglove Pug 1, Green Carpet 1, Hebrew Character 5, Lesser Swallow Prominent 1, Light Brocade 5, Lime-speck Pug 1, Marbled Minor (agg) 6, Muslin Moth 2, Nutmeg 5, Pale Tussock 2, Poplar Hawkmoth 2, Red Twin-spot Carpet (agg) 1, Rustic Shoulder Knot 16, Shuttle-shaped Dart 1, Silver ground carpet 1, Small Square Spot 4, Spectacle 1 and Treble Lines 7.

~ Friday 22nd May 2009 ~

Dave Wilton spent three hours trapping in Bernwood Forest on 20th May: "It brought in 40 species, one of which was the Common Fan-foot. Contrary to what its name suggests, the moth is actually quite uncommon and it is a priority species on the UK Biodiversity Action Plan. Other species present which may not yet have made the UTB list for this year were Tinea semifulvella, Grey Pine Carpet, Broken-barred Carpet, Dwarf Pug, Scorched Wing and Grey Birch. The two most numerous moths were Great Prominent (20) and Orange Footman (25). At Aston Clinton Ragpits, Bucks, earlier in the day I found the tiny micro Pancalia leuwenhoekella flying around in the sunshine."

Common Fan-foot
Photo © Dave Wilton
Grey Birch
Photo © Dave Wilton

Pancalia leuwenhoekella
Photo © Dave Wilton
Tinea semifulvella
Photo © Dave Wilton

Dave adds that a species he's been worried about locally is the Small Elephant Hawk-moth. "In 2005 I had 72 in the garden trap here at Westcott, Bucks. In 2006 there were 42 and in 2007 45, but in 2008 there was just the one. I didn't think things could get much worse than that but they did last night, 21st May. Two wings of a Small Elephant Hawk-moth beside the trap was all that the local Brown Long-eared Bat population left for me! I can only hope that this wasn't the only specimen due to come my way this year. Looking on the bright side, 98 moths of 21 species managed to avoid the bat combat air patrol and they included Figure of Eighty, Dark Sword-grass and Common Wainscot."

Small Elephant Hawk-moth
Photo © Dave Wilton

Nigel Partridge sent this sighting on 21st May: Marbled Brown, 19-05-09, Loosley Row, Bucks.

Marbled Brown
Photo © Nigel Partridge

John Parsons visited Greenham Common, Berks, on 20/05/09: "Amongst a nice selection of lepidoptera was this Lesser Treble-bar."

Lesser Treble-bar
Photo © John Parsons

~ Tuesday 19th May 2009 ~

Thanks to Martin Townsend for confirming the id of the Tissue from Ian Stevenson's Ewelme Watercress beds moth trap on 10th May (see report below). This is particularly pleasing as it was a first for both the site and for Ian.]

Nigel Partridge writes from Loosley Row in Bucks: "One more for the list and also a new species for our garden. It was found midday on 19-05-09 on the daisies - Small Yellow Underwing."

Small Yellow Underwing
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Welcome to the website new contributor Mick A'Court who sent the following report: "I trap at 3 Buckinghamshire locations in the UTB area. These are my semi-rural garden at Butlers Cross on the edge of the Vale of Aylesbury, Aston Clinton Ragpits, which is a calcareous grassland BBOWT reserve on the Chiltern escarpment and a private deciduous woodland in the west of the county (not too far from Finemere Wood). I also trap at Wilstone Reservoir, just over the border in Herts, but I don't think that comes under UTB. I use 40W Actinic Heath traps with light sensors that activate the lamp at dusk. I set them either in the morning or evening and leave overnight, returning to check them at first light the following morning. Here is a list of macro moths caught at Aston Clinton Ragpits on the night of 14th May using two 40W Actinic Heath Traps: Common Swift 1, Chinese Character 2, Purple Bar 1, Small Phoenix 2, Red-green Carpet 1, Common Marbled Carpet 1, Spruce Carpet 2, Green Carpet 17, Small Waved Umber 1, Lime-speck Pug 1, V Pug 2, Treble Bar 2, Yellow-barred Brindle 2, Brimstone Moth 2, Scalloped Hazel 1, Waved Umber 3, Lobster Moth 1, Swallow Prominent 1, White Ermine 3, Least Black Arches 2, Heart & Dart 1, Flame Shoulder 3, Shears 1, Light Brocade 1, Lead-coloured Drab 1, Common Quaker 1, Brown Rustic 1, Rustic Shoulder-knot 1, Treble Lines 1, Green Silver-lines 1, Red/Dark Barred Twin Spot Carpet 3. Also caught 9 Cockchafers."

Light Brocade
Photo © Mick A'Court
Green Silver-lines
Photo © Mick A'Court

On 14th May Dave Maunder ran his garden m.v. trap in Aylesbury and caught: Pebble Prominent (1); Iron Prominent (1); Swallow Prominent (1); Oak Hook-tip (1); Chinese Character (1); Poplar Grey (1); Rustic Shoulder-knots (6); Lychnis moth (1); Vine's Rustic (1); Turnip moth (1); Cabbage moth (1); Bright-line Brown-eye (2); Setaceous Hebrew Character (1); Scalloped Hazel (2); Waved Umber (1); Streamer (1); Brimstone moths (6); Common Marbled Carpets (6); Garden Carpets (2); Small Magpies (2). Other moths seen around Aylesbury over the last week were:- Pebble Prominent (1); Iron Prominent (1); Pale Prominent (1); Swallow Prominents (2); Poplar Grey (1); Muslin moths (2); Clouded Silver (1); Waved Umber (2); Pale Tussock (1); Nut-tree Tussock (1); Hebrew Character (1) and Brimstone moths (2)."

Pebble Prominent
Photo © Dave Maunder
Iron Prominent
Photo © Dave Maunder
Pale Prominent
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Saturday 16th May 2009 ~

Martin Albertini sent this news today: "Small Ranunculus resting on outside house wall in Maidenhead, Berks, on 16th May - quite early for this species."

John Parsons, Newbury, sent this sighting: "I disturbed a couple of these Silver-ground Carpets on 15th May at Benham Marsh west of Newbury, Berks."

Silver-ground Carpet
Photo © Photographer

Nigel Partridge, Loosley Row, Bucks sent the following: "Below is an image of the Coronet I caught on 14th May (see report below). Plus another new one for the list - Pseudargyrotoza conwagana. This was also from the 14th May."

Coronet
Photo © Nigel Partridge
Pseudargyrotoza conwagana
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Peter Hall reported the following on 15th May: "Swarming in their hundreds yesterday, 14th, in a field full of buttercups just outside Ballinger Common, Bucks, was Glyphipterix simpliciella."

~ Thursday 14th May 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge reported a few more moths from his garden in Loosley Row, Bucks: Brown Silver-line 14-05-09, Barred Hook-tip 14-05-09 and Coronet 15-05-09.

David Redhead ran his garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, on 13th May: "I've just emptied my overnight garden moth trap - it contained several new species for me for the year and possibly two, both common, for the UTB list - Clouded Border and a female Bee Moth (Aphomia sociella)."

On Tuesday afternoon, 12th May, Mick & Wendy Campbell found this micro moth Aphomia sociella (Bee Moth) on their garden wall in Bucks.

Bee Moth (Aphomia sociella)
Photo © Wendy Campbell

David Redhead reports that the Shotover Wildlife moth team have just started their second session to update the moth list for Shotover SSSI on the edge of Oxford. "Each session lasts from a week to ten days and two Heath 6W actinic traps are run each night, their position being varied between six strategically chosen locations. The first session from 30 March to 6 April produced 23 macro-moth species and half a dozen micro-moth species. After three nights of the second session which commenced on 10 May the following moths have been caught: Brindled Pug, Brown Silver-line, Early Tooth-striped, Flame Shoulder, Green Carpet, Hebrew Character, Lesser Swallow Prominent, Maiden's Blush, Muslin, Nut-tree Tussock, Oak Nycteoline, Orange Footman, Pale Tussock, Small Phoenix, Water Carpet, White Ermine and Celypha lacunana."

Ian Stevenson ran a moth trap at Ewelme Watercress Beds (Oxon) overnight on 10th/11th May and produced the following: Lesser Swallow Prominent, White Ermine, Flame Shoulder, Green Carpet, Spectacle, Light Brocade and a Tissue.

Tissue
Photo © Ian Stevenson

~ Tuesday 12th May 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge sent the following today: "I've another species to add to the list - Nematopogon schwarziellus, 10-05-09, Loosley Row, Bucks. Thanks to Peter Hall for confirming the ID."

News from David Redhead today that the Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnet caterpillars he reported on 1st May have started to pupate. "During a visit to the area of grassland near our house in Littlemore, Oxon, this morning over a hundred cocoons were found and about half that number of caterpillars were getting into place to start making their cocoons, as shown in the first photo. Over a dozen caterpillars were in the process of making their cocoons and the second photo shows one spinning its cocoon from the inside. In parts of the site they appeared to be running out of suitable parking places, as shown in the third photo. The fourth photo shows a predated cocoon and another caterpillar making his cocoon. On closer examination of many of the cocoons it was obvious the pupation process was not complete as the caterpillar was still clearly visible inside, as shown in the last photo."

Narrow-bordered Five Spot Burnet caterpillars pupating & cocoons
Photo © David Redhead

Dave Wilton reported the following on 11th May: "Compared to 9th May when the temperature dropped to 3ºC and I got just 11 moths of six species in the garden trap (but including a Purple Bar), the night of 10th May brought in a good selection of moths here at Westcott, Bucks even though it was still rather chilly (minimum 7ºC with a brisk NE breeze): Chinese Character (1), Red Twin-spot Carpet (1), Common Marbled Carpet (1), Green Carpet (1), Mottled Pug (1), Currant Pug (1), Common Pug (2), White-spotted Pug (7), Treble-bar (2), Brimstone Moth (3), Poplar Hawk-moth (1), Pebble Prominent (1), Coxcomb Prominent (1), Pale Prominent (1), Buff-tip (1), Pale Tussock (1), Buff Ermine (1), Muslin Moth (1, male), Flame Shoulder (13), Small Square-spot (1), Bright-line Brown-eye (1), Powdered Quaker (8), Hebrew Character (6), Clouded-bordered Brindle (1), Rustic Shoulder-knot (8) and Spectacle (1). It was nice to see pugs in reasonable condition so that there was no doubt about their identities. That will presumably change after the rain expected later this week!"

Clouded-bordered Brindle
Photo © Dave Wilton
Currant Pug
Photo © Dave Wilton
White-spotted Pug
Photo © Dave Wilton

~ Saturday 9th May 2009 ~

David Redhead sent the following on 8th May: "Yesterday's dog walks (7th May) seem to have produced two additions to the UTB list. During an early morning walk across the marshland near our house in Littlemore, Oxon, we came across a fully grown Drinker Moth caterpillar munching on phragmites australis. During our early evening walk in the scrubland near our house we saw a white moth flying and, when it conveniently settled, it turned out to be a Clouded Silver."

John Parsons sent this report on 8th May: "I've been seeing these Speckled Yellows on Greenham Common (Berks) all week, getting close enough for a photo was a question of patience."

Speckled Yellow
Photo © John Parsons

Dave Wilton found it hard going in Finemere Wood, Bucks on 6th May: "There were strong winds and a bright moon, but in the end my two MV traps produced a reasonable combined total of 33 species in nearly three hours. New for me for the year were Ancylis badiana, Oak Hook-tip, Cream Wave, Flame Carpet, Green Carpet, Pale Oak Beauty, White Ermine, White-pinion Spotted, Alder Moth and Rustic Shoulder-knot."

Ancylis badiana
Photo © Dave Wilton
Alder Moth
Photo © Dave Wilton

Nigel Partridge found two more moths for the list: "Both caught 6-5-09, Loosley Row, Bucks - Common Carpet and White-spotted Pug."

~ Wednesday 6th May 2009 ~

Eddie Napper says there's not much to report from Wokingham, Berks, recently but overnight on 4th May an Argyresthia trifasciata.

Argyresthia trifasciata
Photo © Eddie Napper

Martin Harvey sent this news yesterday, 5th May: "I was collecting my son Dominic from school this afternoon when he asked me "What's this caterpillar?" It's a question he asks fairly often, but this time he'd found a very interesting one - a Scarlet Tiger caterpillar, on flowers of Green Alkanet in the school drive at Great Kimble. Martin Albertini tells me there are few recent Scarlet Tiger records in Bucks, and none from this part of the Chilterns. Scarlet Tiger is a beautiful moth that is easy to rear, so there is a possibility that this one has been released by someone. Dominic is going to try to rear the adult moth from his caterpillar."

Scarlet Tiger caterpillar
Photo © Martin Harvey
Scarlet Tiger caterpillar
Photo © Martin Harvey

Adam Bassett sent this report from Marlow Bottom, Bucks on 4th May: "Friday May 1st: "May Bugs/Cockchafers by far the most numerous thing in the trap - I'm sure these cumbersome bugs scare off most of the moths, but I had 19 macro species, of which the following were year ticks: Red/Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet agg, Small Phoenix, Lobster, Lesser Swallow Prominent, Pale Tussock, Orange Footman, White Ermine, Muslin, Heart & Dart, Flame Shoulder.
Saturday May 2nd: Much the same - year ticks were Flame Carpet and Treble Lines."

May Webber ran her garden moth trap in Witney, Oxon on 04/05/09: "I only managed to get a grand total of 3 moths! They were Muslin Moth, Pale Tussock and Early Grey."

Chris Iles visited Hurst Hill, Cumnor (SP4704) on 3rd May: "I found a Winter Moth larva which descended onto my hand. Also, while looking for White-letter Hairstreak larvae on some English elm in a nearby lane where there was some feeding damage on the leaves, I found March Moth larvae."

Dave Maunder sent the following report: "On 1st May I ran my garden m.v. trap in Aylesbury, Bucks and got:- Waved Umber (1); Scorched Carpet (1); Garden Carpet (1); Brimstone moths (4); Double-striped Pugs (2); Turnip moth (1); Grey Dagger agg. (1); Early Grey (2); Hebrew Character (1); Epiphyas postvittana (Light-brown Apple Moth) (1); Many Plume (1) and Chinese Character (1). Also seen locally - Buff Ermine (1); Pale Tussock (1) and Brimstone moth (1) - these three seen on 3rd May."

~ Saturday 2nd May 2009 ~

David Redhead's garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, produced the following catch on 1st May: "Small Phoenix 4, Chocolate-tip 3, Least Black Arches 3, Pale Prominent 3, Poplar Hawkmoth 3, Swallow Prominent 3, Brimstone 1, Hebrew Character 1, Oak-tree Pug 1, Nut-tree Tussock 1, Pale Tussock 1, Pebble Prominent 1 and Red Twin-spot Carpet 1, but the most numerous were the Maybugs with 12. Also just found a Spectacle settled by the light in our dining room. The grassland by our house is heaving with burnet moth caterpillars - most of them appear to be full grown Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet caterpillars.

Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet caterpillar
Photo © David Redhead

Nigel Partridge reported the following new species for this season: "Very good conditions overnight on 30th April producing two species which I think are new for the list: Puss Moth and Spectacle. Then on 01/05/09, also at Loosley Row in Bucks, a Lime Hawkmoth and Common White Wave."

During a walk along the disused railway line at Verney Junction near East Claydon in Bucks on 1st May Wendy & Mick Campbell saw their first Cinnabar moth of the year.

On 28th April Dave Maunder found my first batch of the Horse Chestnut Leaf-miner (Cameraria ohridella) moths (15+) on Chestnut leaves near to his home in south Aylesbury. "This is the third year running I've recorded them from these trees. Photos below."

Horse Chestnut Leaf-miner
Photo © Dave Maunder
Horse Chestnut Leaf-miner
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Tuesday 28th April 2009 ~

Martin Harvey, Marc Botham and David Redhead spent the evening of Thursday 23rd again looking for the Barred Tooth-striped, this time in Rough Common, part of Wytham Woods in Oxon, where it was last recorded in 1987. Unfortunately most of the privet seemed to have disappeared in the intervening two decades, so they had to be content with the species attracted to their three lights in a nearby limestone scallop. Nut-tree Tussocks, Lunar Marbled Browns and Purple Thorns all appeared in good numbers along with another 15 species. The pick of the bunch was an early and pristine Lobster Moth. (Please note a permit is required to visit Wytham Woods).

~ Monday 27th April 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge reported some more moths from his garden in Loosley Row, Bucks: "Two from last night, 26th April - Spruce Carpet and Garden Carpet plus an Iron Prominent on 25th April."

Spruce Carpet
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Dave Maunder sent the following report today: "On 22nd April I ran my garden m.v. in Aylesbury (Bucks) and I also caught my earliest ever Poplar Hawkmoth (see David Redhead's report for 23rd April). Also caught were:- Purple Thorn (1); Streamer (1); Waved Umber (1); Brimstone moth (1) and Clouded drab (1)."

Purple Thorn
Photo © Dave Maunder

Adam Bassett's Marlow Bottom, Bucks, garden trap from April 24th produced 42 moths: "14 macro and 1 micro species, but also my first 3 May bugs of the year and 2 black sexton beetles (nicrophorus humator). Year ticks included Garden Carpet, Red-green Carpet, White-pinion Spotted, Pale Mottled Willow and Nut-tree Tussock. 8 Least Black Arches were notable."

Bill Parker and Dave Wilton trapped at Rushbeds Wood, Bucks on 24th April and managed to see 37 species in two hours: "Eriocrania subpurpurella, Acleris literana, Pebble Hook-tip, Chinese Character, Frosted Green, Red Twin-spot Carpet, Streamer, Water Carpet, Small Phoenix, Brindled Pug, Oak-tree Pug, V-Pug, Seraphim, Early Tooth-striped, Scorched Carpet, Brimstone Moth, Early Thorn, Purple Thorn, Scalloped Hazel, Waved Umber, Iron Prominent, Pebble Prominent, Lesser Swallow Prominent, Swallow Prominent, Coxcomb Prominent, Scarce Prominent, Lunar Marbled Brown, Orange Footman, Least Black Arches, Flame Shoulder, Small Quaker, Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Hebrew Character, Knot Grass, Angle Shades and Nut-tree Tussock. Most numerous were Seraphim (28) and Nut-tree Tussock (51)."

Danny Howard has had a couple more moth sightings in his garden in Cowley, Oxon: "A Knot Grass on the 22nd April, then last night (24th) 3 Brimstones, a Common Quaker, a Flame Shoulder and an Iron Prominent, another moth I don't recall seeing before."

Knot Grass
Photo © Danny Howard
Iron Prominent
Photo © Danny Howard

~ Friday 24th April 2009 ~

David Redhead ran his garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, last night, 23rd April: "A disppointing return in numbers with just 22 macros - 8 Swallow Prominent, 3 Common Quaker and singletons of Brindled Beauty, Clouded Drab, Early Grey, Flame Shoulder, Hebrew Character, Muslin, Oak-tree Pug, Poplar Hawkmoth, Shuttle-shaped Dart and Streamer. This is the first time I have ever caught a Poplar Hawkmoth in April and I notice it beats the previous earliest one reported to the UTB website by a week. Also one micro - Diurnea fagella."

Poplar Hawkmoth
Photo © David Redhead

Dave Wilton sent this update on 23rd April: "With new species coming in thick and fast now I don't know how many of these are still likely to be new to the UTB list, but over the last few days I've had Nematopogon swammerdamella (22nd), Depressaria pastinacella (Parsnip Moth) (21st), Syndemis musculana (22nd), Cydia ulicetana (19th), Red Twin-spot Carpet (21st), Brimstone Moth (21st), Waved Umber (22nd), Lesser Swallow Prominent (19th), Coxcomb Prominent (22nd), Flame Shoulder (21st) and Poplar Grey (21st, another very early specimen)."

Welcome to the website new contributor Jean-Paul Brouard who is new to the Oxfordshire area: "I would like to let you know about some of the moths that I found on the chalk slopes during the weekend of Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th April at Hartslock N.R, Goring (Oxon) - Burnet Companion (10+), Pyrausta aurata (4), Pyrausta nigrata (8) and Small Purple-barred (20)."

Burnet Companion
Photo © Jean-Paul Brouard
Pyrausta aurata
Photo © Jean-Paul Brouard

Pyrausta nigrata
Photo © Jean-Paul Brouard
Small Purple-barred
Photo © Jean-Paul Brouard

Peter Hall ran the moth trap in his garden in Ballinger Common, Bucks, on 16th April: Micros were: Eriocrania subpurpurella, Plutella xylostella (Diamond-back), Acleris literana and macros: Brindled Pug, Early Thorn, Purple Thorn, Brindled Beauty, Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Twin-spotted Quaker, Hebrew Character, Pale Pinion and Chestnut.

~ Tuesday 21st April 2009 ~

Dave Wilton visited the disused railway line near Salden Wood, Bucks on 20th April looking for butterflies: "There was a miniscule moth which was flying everywhere in the bright sun. It turned out to be Grapholita jungiella."

On 19th April Dave Maunder found a very early specimen of  Eurrhypara hortulata (Small Magpie) at some flats in Aylesbury and wondered if it was a Bucks record. Also found there was a Swallow Prominent.
[Martin Albertini says the second week in April is the earliest record he has on the Bucks moth database for the Small Magpie. The four earliest records are all in this century.]

Eurrhypara hortulata (Small Magpie)
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Saturday 18th April 2009 ~

Dave Maunder has been spotting moths around Aylesbury over the last week: "Shoulder Stripe (1); Streamer (1); Early Thorn (10); Brimstone moths (3); Swallow Prominent (1); Nut-tree Tussock (2); Early Grey (3); Hebrew Character (2); Dotted Border (1); Double-striped Pug (1); Diurnea fagella (1). Also on 14th April in my garden trap in Aylesbury I caught:- Nut-tree Tussock (1); Early Grey (3); Hebrew Character (4) and Double-striped Pug (1)."

Shoulder Stripe
Photo © Dave Maunder
Streamer
Photo © Dave Maunder
Swallow Prominent
Photo © Dave Maunder

Mark Calway sent these reports from Earley, Berkshire on 16th April: "Below is a photo of a Pyrausta agg. A few of these have been appearing at my shed window over the last week - possibly emerging from the herbs which are growing in shed wall boxes just below the window. Also below is a female Diurnea fagella which I photographed at Shinfield Park, Reading on 16th April.

Pyrausta aurata/purpuralis
Photo © Mark Calway
Diurnea fagella f.
Photo © Mark Calway

Perhaps these photos, taken on 10th April, will also be of interest. They show a Pug (again at my shed window) exhibiting a tuft of androconial scales at the tip of the abdomen. I believe they are called hair-pencils."

Pug displaying androconial scales
Photo © Mark Calway

A couple more sightings came from Danny Howard on 16th April: "The following were both to light and new to my garden in Cowley (Oxon), this year. The micro Alucita hexadactyla (Twenty-plume Moth) seen on the 14th April and a Yellow-barred Brindle on the 15th April. Photos below - thanks to Peter Hall for identifying the Twenty Plume!"

Alucita hexadactyla (Twenty-plume Moth)
Photo © Danny Howard
Yellow-barred Brindle
Photo © Danny Howard

Dave Wilton sent this report from Westcott, Bucks on 16th April: "Further new species that I may still be able to add to the UTB list from trapping over the last few days are micros: Elachista canapennella, Plutella xylostella/Diamond-back Moth & Scrobipalpa acuminatella (all on the 14th April) and Pammene argyrana (15th April). Macros: Great Prominent (12th April), Common Wave, Pebble Hook-tip & Sallow Kitten (all on 15th April). The Sallow Kitten was my 50th macro species so far this year. That total was achieved ten days earlier than in 2008 and six days earlier than in 2007. The thundery nights of 14th and 15th April brought me eight Diamond-back Moths altogether, suggesting immigration from the continent. It was a pity that nothing more exciting accompanied them to this part of Bucks!"

~ Wednesday 15th April 2009 ~

Dave Wilton visited the disused railway line to the west of Westcott Airfield, Bucks, on 14th April and found a Pyrausta purpuralis and Common Heath.

~ Tuesday 14th April 2009 ~

John Parsons visited Greenham Common, Berks on 14th April and photographed this Common Heath.

Common Heath
Photo © John Parsons

Chris Brown went for a walk along the river at Goring/Streatley today, 14th and found this Ruby Tiger moth crawling across the tow-path.

Ruby Tiger moth
Photo © Chris Brown

Adam Bassett, Marlow Bottom in Bucks, sent these recent garden records:
"April 11th: 3rd Dotted Chestnut of the year and 1st Brimstone.
April 12th: a few early ones appeared tonight including Currant Pug, Yellow-barred Brindle (a really fresh green specimen), Scalloped Hazel and 2 Least Black Arches, plus 1st Waved Umber."

Currant Pug
Photo © Adam Bassett
Scalloped Hazel
Photo © Adam Bassett
Least Black Arches
Photo © Adam Bassett

Danny Howard (Cowley, Oxon) writes that he put the light out last night (12th April) and dissapointingly only got two moths: "However one was a Chocolate-tip which I haven't seen before so I was pleased to see it, the other an Early Grey. Today, 13th April, in the garden I saw a Grey/Dark Dagger apparently sunning itself on the shed wall. This seems very early for this species according to Martin Townsend's book (usually mid-May onwards?)."

Chocolate-tip
Photo © Danny Howard
Grey/Dark Dagger
Photo © Danny Howard

Nigel Partridge reported the following on 13th April: V-Pug on 12-04-09, Loosley Row, Bucks.

V-Pug
Photo © Nigel Partridge

David Redhead reports that his overnight garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon, produced a rather low total on 12th April: "Only 18 macro-moths and no micros. However, nearly half the eleven species were additions to my 2009 garden list : Brindled Pug, Early Grey, Pale Prominent, Streamer and Swallow Prominent. The Pale Prominent is about a fortnight earlier than I have caught it before and it was nice to see the exquisitely marked Streamer again, as it is some years since I caught one. The remainder of the catch was 6 Hebrew Character, 3 Common Quaker and singletons of Clouded Drab, Nut-tree Tussock, Pale Pinion and Red Chestnut."

Mark Calway's Caloptilia moth from 14th March has been confirmed by Peter Hall as Caloptilia elongella (see Mark's report below).

~ Saturday 11th April 2009 ~

These two reports came from David Redhead on 10th April: "On Wednesday evening 8th April, Martin Harvey, Marc Botham and I searched the wild privet in the M40 Compensation Area for the Barred Tooth-striped - sadly without success. Whilst we were searching we ran a couple of lights in the eastern end of Shabbington Wood which along with about a dozen other moths produced a Scarce Prominent and a pristine Frosted Green. The former provided compensation for Marc's and my own efforts as it was a first for our all time lists.
Then on 9th April, I ran my overnight garden moth trap (in Littlemore, Oxon) which produced 35 macro moths from 12 species but no micros: 8 Common Quaker, 8 Hebrew Character, 4 Clouded Drab, 3 Nut-tree Tussock, 3 Small Quaker, 2 Early Thorn (a male and a female), 2 Red-green Carpet, 1 Brindled Beauty, 1 Muslin Moth (male), 1 Pebble Prominent, 1 Red Chestnut and 1 Twin-spotted Quaker. The Muslin Moth, Nut-tree Tussock and Pebble Prominent are the earliest I have ever caught, all by about a couple of weeks."

Nigel Partridge writes that the trapping conditions were quite good in Loosley Row, Bucks on 9th April: "I think these are new to the list for this year. Endrosis sarcitrella (White-shouldered House-moth), Waved Umber, Flame shoulder."

Endrosis sarcitrella
Photo © Nigel Partridge
Flame Shoulder
Photo © Nigel Partridge
Waved Umber
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Danny Howard put the light out in his garden in Cowley, Oxon on 9th April: "I got 1 each of the following: Brimstone moth, Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Early Thorn and Nut-tree Tussock. Also some as yet unidentified caterpillars munching on our border plants!"

~ Thursday 9th April 2009 ~

Dave Maunder (Aylesbury, Bucks) ran his garden m.v. moth trap on 6th April: "Results were - Hebrew Character (5), Clouded Drab (3), Common Quaker (2) and Early Grey (2) - see photo below. Also seen recently on 29th March were two Engrailed moths sitting on tree-trunks in woods near Grangelands, Bucks and one Diurnea fagella also on a tree in woods near Chequers, Bucks.

Moth trap contents - 6th April
Photo © Dave Maunder

Nigel Partridge says he recorded a new moth species for his garden: A Lunar Marbled Brown, on 8-4-09 at Loosley Row, Bucks.

Lunar Marbled Brown
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Jan Haseler writes that the Berks Moth Group recorded 28 species of moth at Moor Copse on Friday 3rd April, including White-marked, Early Tooth-striped, Water Carpet, Red Chestnut, Powdered Quaker, Chocolate-tip, Angle Shades (first adult), Lunar Marbled Brown and Semioscopis steinkellneriana.

~ Tuesday 7th April 2009 ~

Adam Bassett, Marlow Bottom, Bucks, sent this update on 7th April: "A few new year ticks for the garden:
April 4th: Purple Thorn, Brindled Beauty
April 5th: Streamer, Shoulder Stripe."

The following early sighting came via Martin Harvey today: "Chris Pickford sent me this photo of an Eyed Hawk-moth that appeared in his moth-trap (Chilton, Berkshire Downs) on 5 April 2009, making it the earliest ever record for this moth in Berkshire. There is only one previous record for April (20 April 2006), and it normally isn't seen until mid-May. As usual, it looks like being an unusual year!"

Eyed Hawk-moth
Photo © Chris Pickford

Tom Stevenson sent this report on 6th April: "My overnight trap (in Benson, Oxon) on the 5th April held three moths - a record for this year! 2 Hebrew Characters and a Nut-tree Tussock (a first for me - photo below)."

Nut-tree Tussock
Photo © Tom Stevenson

~ Saturday 4th April 2009 ~

Mark Calway writes from Earley, Berkshire: "Amongst last night's moths (4th April) was a Shuttle-shaped Dart, my first for the year."

Nigel Partridge sent the following on 4th April: "This one wasn't on the list last time I looked - Streamer, 03-04-09, Loosley Row, Bucks."

Streamer
Photo © Nigel Partridge

A couple more sightings received from Danny Howard today, 4th April: "On Tuesday 31st March I walked to work and noticed a large colony of fairly well grown Scarlet Tiger caterpillars on comfrey in someone's front garden right near the plain end of the Cowley Road (Oxon). Last night (3rd April) I put the light out and had a Diurnia fagella, three Double-striped Pugs and a Nut-tree Tussock."

Nut-tree Tussock
Photo © Danny Howard

Dave Wilton sent the following results of his recent moth trapping: "Further new species for the year over the last few days have included Agonopterix arenella, Water Carpet, Early Tooth-striped and Nut-tree Tussock (all at Chinkwell Wood, Bucks on 1st April), Epinotia tedella (to be confirmed, at Westcott, Bucks on 2nd April), Red-green Carpet (at Brill Common, Bucks on 2nd April) and Eriocrania subpurpurella (at Finemere Wood, Bucks on 3rd April). The Epinotia species tortrix and Eriocrania subpurpurella are illustrated below, both having a wing length of about 6mm."

Epinotia tedella sp.
Photo © Dave Wilton
Eriocrania subpurpurella
Photo © Dave Wilton

~ Friday 3rd April 2009 ~

Adam Bassett sent this report today, 3rd April: "I ran my garden moth trap (Marlow Bottom, Bucks) on March 30th. More of the same with a few additions, but my 2nd Dotted Chestnut in 10 days was nice, a different individual from 21st. The full list was: Diurnea Fagella, March Moth, Brindled Pug, Double-striped Pug, Early Thorn, Dotted Border, Engrailed, Small Quaker, Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Twin-spotted Quaker, Hebrew Character, Pale Pinion, Early Grey, Satellite, Chestnut and Dotted Chestnut."

Tom Stevenson sent the following on 3rd April: "Things are really looking up - two moths, Early Grey and Hebrew Character, in my overnight Benson (Oxon) trap on 1st April. More accurately, neither was in the trap but just outside!"

Dave Wilton sent this update on 1st April: "Since my last report I've added Emperor Moth, Early Thorn, Pale Pinion & Herald to my year list. The rather early female Emperor came to MV light in the grounds of Waddesdon Manor on 31st March. She spent today (1st April) in my garden, just over a mile from where she was trapped, but failed to draw in a mate. While carrying out my first butterfly transect of the year at Finemere Wood, Bucks at lunchtime today I saw six Orange Underwing sp moths and at last managed to detain one for long enough to confirm that it was, as expected, a Light Orange Underwing, picture below. The feathered antennae are sufficient to tell the males of the two species apart, although I did check (and photograph) the underside as well. This was one of three associated with aspen near the wood entrance. The other three were found further into the wood and were associated with birch so should have been Orange Underwing, but none came low enough to catch."

Emperor Moth
Photo © Dave Wilton
Light Orange Underwing
Photo © Dave Wilton

Eddie Napper reported as follows on 31st March: "With it being a nice mild cloudy night last night (30/03/09) I ran the trap overnight in my Wokingham (Berks) garden and was pleased to see next morning Brindled Pug, Pine Beauty, Herald, Early Grey plus one as yet unidentified Caloptilia species. I guess that the Herald must have overwintered in my garage or one nearby."

Pine Beauty
Photo © Eddie Napper
Herald
Photo © Eddie Napper

Mark Calway sent this report on 31st March: "I had my first Brindled Beauty for the year last night, 30/03/09. It came to actinic light in my garden in Earley, Berkshire."

~ Wednesday 25th March 2009 ~

The following report was just received from Dave Wilton: "Another two-hour session in Finemere Wood, Bucks last night (Tuesday 24th March), before it got too windy and wet, brought in 486 moths of 22 species. That total did include 264 Common Quakers and 132 Small Quakers, so it was a good job I didn't stay there all night or I might still be counting them now! New for me for the year were Semioscopis steinkellneriana and Brindled Pug."

Alastair Driver sent this email on 23rd March: "I had an Early Thorn to my porch light in Sonning, Berks on Sunday 22nd March."

David Redhead ran his garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon on 22nd March: "This morning my overnight (min temp 5.6C) garden moth trap contained 30 Clouded Drab, 18 Common Quaker, 11 Small Quaker, 6 Hebrew Character, 6 Lead-coloured Drab, 5 Diurnea fagella, 4 Twin-spotted Quaker, 2 March Moth, 2 Oak Beauty, 1 Pale Pinion, 1 Shoulder Stripe."

Adam Bassett ran his first trap of the year on March 21st: "It brought in the usual fare, but both Dotted Chestnut and Red Chestnut were new for my Marlow Bottom, Bucks, garden list. The full catch was: Diurnea Fagella, Yellow Horned, March Moth, Oak Beauty, Dotted Border, Red Chestnut, Small Quaker, Common Quaker, Clouded Drab, Twin-spotted Quaker, Hebrew Character, Early Grey, Chestnut and Dotted Chestnut."

Dotted Chestnut
Photo © Adam Bassett
Red Chestnut
Photo © Adam Bassett

Martin Mitchell sent the following moth sighting: "Orange Underwing Archiearis parthenias - single seen 22/03/09 3pm in BBOWT's Baynes Reserve SU513654 (Berks). I didn't get a close look, but as it was settled on the path next to an extensive area of silver birch and I couldn't see any aspen nearby, I felt it was almost certainly the much more common species."

Tom Stevenson ran his overnight moth trap again on 21st March in Benson, Oxon and says the result was similar to last time: "A single moth but this time of the Plume variety. Identification beyond my ability but I attach a photo in case someone out there can help?"
[Thanks to Martin Townsend for identifying the moth as Emmelina agg. The plume moth could either be Emmelina monodactyla or E.argoteles, B&F 1524 & 1524a respectively, owing to the discovery of the latter in 2005 in Wicken Fenn by Jeff Higgott and Stuart Read ... click here for more information. The two moths can only be separated microscopically.]

Plume moth : Emmelina monodactyla/argoteles
Photo © Tom Stevenson

~ Sunday 22nd March 2009 ~

Dave Wilton ran two moth traps on 21st March - one in a local wood and one in his garden: "A couple of hours in Shabbington Wood, Bernwood Forest last night (Saturday 21st March) produced a reasonable 244 moths of 20 species despite the NW breeze: Ypsolopha ustella (1), Diurnea fagella (3), Tortricodes alternella (2), Yellow Horned (3), March Moth (6), Shoulder Stripe (1), Small Brindled Beauty (3), Pale Brindled Beauty (1), Oak Beauty (5), Engrailed (1), Red Chestnut (11), Small Quaker (83), Blossom Underwing (4), Common Quaker (81), Clouded Drab (15), Twin-spotted Quaker (8), Hebrew Character (8), Early Grey (3), Satellite (1) and Chestnut (4). Back home at Westcott, Bucks I was a little disappointed to find two medium sized bats (presumably Brown Long-eared) in a constant tight orbit about 2ft off the ground around the garden trap. However, by morning there weren't too many sets of moth wings on the lawn and the trap itself held Agonopterix heracliana (1), March Moth (1), Dotted Border (1), Small Quaker (6), Powdered Quaker (1), Common Quaker (18), Clouded Drab (19), Twin-spotted Quaker (2), Hebrew Character (22), Early Grey (1) and Dotted Chestnut (1). The "Notable B list" Dotted Chestnut is the third to visit my garden trap in four years, so perhaps the moth isn't quite so "notable" locally as it used to be!"

Blossom Underwing
Photo © Dave Wilton
Powdered Quaker
Photo © Dave Wilton

~ Friday 20th March 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge sent this addition to the UTB 2009 Species List today: A Dotted Chestnut, 19-03-09, Loosley Row, Bucks.

Dotted Chestnut
Photo © Nigel Partridge

~ Wednesday 18th March 2009 ~

Dave Wilton sent the following today, 18th March: "A trip out to some local woodland this afternoon produced my first day-flying moth species of the year. I can be confident of Light Orange Underwing in a private wood at Kingswood, Bucks where four were seen flying around the tops of a large stand of mature aspen (this particular wood has little, if any, birch and certainly none anywhere near where the moths were seen). On the other hand, nearby Finemere Wood has both tree species and there's a good chance that I saw both Orange Underwing and Light Orange Underwing there today. Unfortunately, as is often the case with these two moth species, they remained at canopy height and steadfastly refused to come down for inspection. I found three moths continuously circling some aspen close to the wood entrance, two more flying around birch further into the wood and another flying around an oak which had birch nearby."

David Redhead, Littlemore, Oxon sent this report today, 18th March: There was a male and female Engrailed on Mother-in-Law's kitchen window (light left on overnight as a misguided security measure but as it's a fluorescent light not too much global warming created). I forgot to mention in Sunday's report (15th March) that Wendy found a Scarlet Tiger Moth caterpillar in the garden."

Chris Brown was looking for butterflies in Crowsley Wood, Berks on 16th March: and found this Engrailed moth:

Engrailed
Photo © Chris Brown

Dave Maunder sent these reports: "My first attempt this year at running my garden m.v. trap on Wednesday night (11th March) produced just four moths here in Aylesbury, Bucks - Oak Beauty, March Moth, Common Quaker and Clouded Drab - moths are a bit thin on the ground here in town! Also seen on 13th were:- Oak beauty (1 - my first ever female at light, at Walton court shops); plus my first Early Grey of the year, and a Hebrew Character. I trapped again on 16th March, but only got:- Hebrew Character (2); Clouded Drab (1); Common Quaker (1), and Early Grey (1)."

Oak Beauty
Photo © Dave Maunder
Clouded Drab
Photo © Dave Maunder

~ Monday 16th March 2009 ~

Danny Howard sent this email today: "I saw the Scarlet Tiger caterpillar in my garden in Cowley, Oxford again on Sunday (15th March), slightly larger but wandering around nowhere near any food! Also an Angle Shades caterpillar - photo below."

Angle Shades caterpillar
Photo © Danny Howard

Nigel Partridge sent the following yesterday: "One more for the list : Acleris cristana, 15-03-09, Loosley Row."

Acleris cristana
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Mark Calway ran his moth trap on 14th March: "Similarly to Danny Howard, of Cowley, Oxford, I have been running an actinic inside a window in Earley, Berkshire. Of note on 14th March 2009 were two Caloptilia betulicola (subject to confirmation / separation from similar species C. elongella)." [NB: The UTB Species List will be updated once the id has been confirmed.]

Caloptilia betulicola/elongella
Photo © Mark Calway

May Webber ran her moth trap on 14th March: "I have just run my moth trap (Witney, Oxon) so thought I should email in some sightings: Small Quaker x6, Common Quaker x9, Twin-Spot Quaker x1, Hebrew Character x2, Grey Shoulder-knot, Tawny Pinion x1, Clouded Drab x4, Dotted Border x2 and Yellow Horned."

Yellow Horned
Photo © May Webber

This report came from David Redhead today: "Yesterday morning, 15th March, there was a Clouded Drab, Dotted Border and Shoulder Stripe resting in our porch (Littlemore, Oxon). Nothing remarkable in that as all three are common moths. What is remarkable is that in over a decade of trapping and recording moths in my garden the Shoulder Stripe has just made its first appearance. Even the Dotted Border only made its first appearance in a moth trap on 22nd February this year when four were caught. Fascinating, these moths."

Jan Haseler sent this report on 14th March: "Attached is a picture of a Water Carpet which was spotted on the BBOWT walk round Moor Copse, Berks this afternoon (Sat 14th March). The previous earliest date for Water Carpet on the Berks Moth database was 27th March."

Water Carpet
Photo © Jan Haseler

~ Friday 13th March 2009 ~

Danny Howard, Cowley, Oxford, sent these reports: "Another night's early spring trapping, i.e. having my uv light on indoors and against the french windows so I don't have to go out unless I see something! Tonight, 13th March, I had a Common Quaker and a Diurnea fagella. On turning the light off I then discovered an Oak Beauty against the bathroom window (a mere 20w low energy bulb in there!). Also, on Wednesday evening, 11th March, I managed to tempt an Early Grey to my window."

Diurnea fagella
Photo © Danny Howard
Oak Beauty
Photo © Danny Howard
Early Grey
Photo © Danny Howard

David Redhead sent this report on 12th March: "My garden moth trap of last night (11th March) produced the best yield to date for 2009 with 84 macro-moths but no micros : 35 Clouded Drab, 17 Small Quaker, 11 Common Quaker, 7 March Moth, 6 Hebrew Character, 2 Lead-coloured Drab, 2 Oak Beauty, 2 Twin-spotted Quaker, 1 Dotted Border and 1 Pale Brindled Beauty."

Tom Stevenson sent the following report on 12th March: "I ran my trap for the first time this year overnight (11th March) under my car-port (Benson, Oxon). Just a single individual, a Common Quaker. Am I doing something wrong? others seem to be catching!"

~ Monday 9th March 2009 ~

Alastair Driver says he's finally awoken from his moth-free slumbers with a Twin-spotted Quaker on the porch wall at home in Sonning (Berks) on the morning of 7th March. "I must get that trap out!"

Nigel Partridge reported another moth species for this year's list on 7th March: "A Large Yellow Underwing larva, found on 23-02-09 at Loosley Row, Bucks. Thanks to Peter Hall for the ID."

~ Thursday 5th March 2009 ~

Dave Wilton took two traps to Shabbington Wood, Bernwood Forest overnight on Saturday 28th February: "In a couple of hours I managed to get a reasonable haul of a dozen species: Tortricodes alternella, Yellow Horned, March Moth, Shoulder Stripe, Small Brindled Beauty, Pale Brindled Beauty, Oak Beauty, Dotted Border, Spring Usher, Common Quaker, Satellite and Chestnut. I spent some time searching tree-trunks by torchlight looking for flightless female moths but only managed to find the one, a Dotted Border (illustrated below along with the Yellow Horned). Eleven males of Dotted Border came to the traps but I found more than that number resting on the oaks, some quite a distance from the traps. Several Chestnuts were also found in the same way."

Dotted Border f.
Photo © Dave Wilton
Yellow Horned
Photo © Dave Wilton

Dave Maunder sent this report on 28th February: "Some moths seen in Aylesbury (Bucks) over the last week or so were:- Pale brindled beauty (4); Dotted border (9); Early moth (5); Chestnut moth (1); Agonopterix heracliana (2); Brown house moth (Hofmannophila pseudospretella) (1 on 25th Feb); Emmelina monodactyla (1). Looks like last week was Pale brindled beauty emergence week around here, whilst this week it was the Dotted border!"

Mark Calway, Earley in Reading, sent the following report on 28th February: "Here's the moth listing for my patch for 2009 so far: Ypsolopha ustella 2 (photo below shows one found at Shinfield Park 27th Feb), Agonopterix heracliana 3, Tortricodes alternella 94, Acleris ferrugana 1, Acleris ferrugana/notana 3, Amblyptilia acanthadactyla 1, Emmelina monodactyla 2, Yellow Horned 1, March Moth 6, Winter Moth 14, Double-striped Pug 1, Small Brindled Beauty 7, Pale Brindled Beauty 19, Spring Usher 7, Dotted Border 12 (photo below shows a female found on the wall of a building at Shinfield Park on 25th Feb), Mottled Umber 7 (photo below is a female found in Shinfield Park in January), Early Moth 1, Small Quaker 8, Common Quaker 5, Clouded Drab 1, Hebrew Character 11, Early Grey 1, Satellite 1, Chestnut 9, Oak Nycteoline 1 (27/2/09)."

Ypsolopha ustella
Photo © Mark Calway
Dotted Border f.
Photo © Mark Calway
Mottled Umber f.
Photo © Mark Calway

~ Tuesday 24th February 2009 ~

Derek Brown sent the following report today: "Finally getting some moths this year in the garden at Beenham (Berks).
15th February: 1x Pale Brindled Beauty and 2x Satellite.
16th February: 1x Spring Usher.
21st February: 1x Small Quaker.
24th February: 2x Pale Brindled Beauty, 1x March Moth, 2x Satellite, 2x Common Quaker and 1x Pale Mottled Willow."

Eddie Napper ran a 125w MV lamp last night, 23rd February, in his Wokingham (Berks) garden: "Not a large catch but reasonable variety. 2 Pale Brindled Beauty, 3 Tortricodes alternella, 2 Common Quaker, 1 Hebrew Character, 1 Dotted Border and 1 Amblyptilia acanthadactyla."

Amblyptilia acanthadactyla
Photo © Eddie Napper
Common Quaker
Photo © Eddie Napper
Hebrew Character
Photo © Eddie Napper

David Redhead ran his garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon overnight on 22nd February with the following results: Macros = Dotted Border 4, Pale Brindled Beauty 4, Chestnut 1, Common Quaker 1 and March Moth 1; Micros = Tortricrodes alternella 2.

Common Quaker
Photo © David Redhead
March Moth
Photo © David Redhead

~ Friday 20th February 2009 ~

Dave Wilton sent this batch of moths today, 20th: "Further additions to my year list over the past couple of days have included Dark Chestnut to the MV trap at Westcott on Wednesday 18th February followed by Oak Beauty to the MV trap at Finemere Wood and Clouded Drab to the actinic at Westcott, both on Thursday 19th February. The Clouded Drab is illustrated below. One noctuid moth which seems to be doing well locally just at the moment is the Satellite. I normally only see it in ones and twos but Martin Harvey and I had at least eight at Rushbeds earlier in the week and I had four to the garden actinic last night."

Clouded Drab
Photo © Dave Wilton

~ Wednesday 18th February 2009 ~

Dave Wilton says he's been making good use of the recent run of mild nights: "On Monday 16th February I took the Robinson trap to Oakley Wood, Bernwood Forest, for three hours and got 76 moths of seven species: Tortricodes alternella, March Moth, Small Brindled Beauty, Pale Brindled Beauty, Spring Usher, Early Moth and Satellite. The following night, Tuesday 17th February, Martin and Dominic Harvey and I ran two MV traps at Rushbeds Wood for about the same length of time, producing an even better catch of more than 120 moths from ten species: Tortricodes alternella, Emmelina monodactyla, March Moth, Shoulder Stripe, Pale Brindled Beauty, Spring Usher, Dotted Border, Early Moth, Satellite and Chestnut."

Small Brindled Beauty
Photo © Dave Wilton
Shoulder Stripe
Photo © Dave Wilton

Dave Maunder sent the following today, 18th February: "This week's mild weather allowed me to find 7 Pale Brindled Beauties and 1 Early Moth at the local shops' security lights (in Aylesbury) - what a difference some decent weather makes!"

Pale Brindled Beauty
Photo © Dave Maunder

May Webber (from Witney in Oxon) reports seeing a Pale Brindled Beauty on her bathroom window on Saturday evening, 14th February.

~ Monday 16th February 2009 ~

Eddie Napper sent the following today: "With the change in the weather (well at least warmer overnight) I ran a 30w actinic lamp just over a sheet overnight on 15/02/09 in my garden in Wokingham, Berks. Results where: Pale Brindled Beauty 3, Spring Usher 1, Dotted Border 1, Agonopterix heracliana 1 and Chestnut 1. The Chestnut is a bit tatty but I think that's what it is."

Dotted Border
Photo © Eddie Napper
Agonopterix heracliana
Photo © Eddie Napper
The Chestnut
Photo © Eddie Napper

Dave Wilton ran his first productive moth trap of this season on 15th February: "Following several zero returns, I'm pleased to be able to report that my garden trap at Westcott, Bucks finally produced some moths last night (Sunday 15th February). I got Agonopterix heracliana (2), Pale Brindled Beauty (2) and Satellite (1). It is also worth mentioning that just before Christmas I found a micro-moth leaf mine, complete with live caterpillar, in amongst some vegetation accompanying cut flowers bought from a supermarket in Aylesbury. Further investigation brought news from the experts that the greenery was Salal (Gaultheria shallon) and that the caterpillar was that of Cameraria gaultheriella, a species native to North America. I managed to keep it alive for just over three weeks but by the third week of January the leaf had dried up too much and the caterpillar passed away within the mine. If I had managed to breed it through to the adult moth it would have been an addition to the British list. This is not the first occasion that the mine itself has been found (Salal is widely exported from the USA and Canada for use in flower arrangements) but it may be the first discovery in which the larva has survived the journey across the Atlantic. So, before you throw out those Valentine's Day flowers, check the leaves!"

Leaf mine in Gaultheria shallon
Photo © Dave Wilton
Cameraria gaultheriella larva
Photo © Dave Wilton

Nigel Partridge reported two moths today: Agonopterix heracliana and Chestnut on 15th February at Loosley Row, Bucks.

Adam Bassett had a Dotted Border on his kitchen window in Marlow Bottom, Bucks on February 14th.

~ Friday 13th February 2009 ~

Danny Howard sent this report on 11th February: "I had a Grey Shoulder-knot at the kitchen window this evening 11th February in Cowley, Oxon."

~ Friday 6th February 2009 ~

Dave Maunder says he's only seen a couple of moths so far this year: "Just 2 Winter Moths in January - one on the 13th, the other on the 18th, both near my home in the Willows, Aylesbury. Let's hope the cold weather abates soon and a few more lepidoptera appear!"

~ Sunday 25th January 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge reported the following today: "This Early Moth came to an outside light last night, 24th January, at my house in Loosley Row, Bucks."

Early Moth
Photo © Nigel Partridge

~ Wednesday 21st January 2009 ~

Nigel Partridge had his first moth of the new year: "A Pale Brindled Beauty on 16-01-09, Loosley Row, Bucks."

Pale Brindled Beauty
Photo © Nigel Partridge

Martin Townsend had his first sighting of the year on 18th January: "If you can count the recently deceased, I found a dead male Spring Usher on the path at Shotover (Oxon)!"

Danny Howard found a caterpillar in his garden in Cowley, Oxford, on 18th January: "This Scarlet Tiger moth caterpillar was resting on a garden ornament so I don't know which foodplant it was using. It's my first sighting of 2009 so I thought I'd submit it. The caterpillar is about 1 1/2 cms long."
[Scarlet Tiger moths are in the larval stage from July to May, hibernating when quite small. Foodplants include a range of herbaceous plants such as comfrey, bramble, Herb Robert, nettle and meadowsweet and also woody plants such as sallow, cotoneaster and blackthorn.]

Scarlet Tiger moth caterpillar
Photo © Danny Howard

David Redhead ran his garden moth trap in Littlemore, Oxon on 16th January for the first time in 2009: "Although it was a mild night (min temp 6.4C), only two moths were caught - a Winter Moth and a Pale Brindled Beauty. The wind may have accounted for the low catch although both moths were on the outside of the trap rather than having taken shelter inside."

~ Friday 16th January 2009 ~

John Parsons photographed his first moth of the season today: "It was Agriopis leucophaearia (Spring Usher) at Bowdown Woods, Greenham (Berks) on January 16th."

Spring Usher
Photo © John Parsons

Eddie Napper reported his first moth of the year on 13th January: "I opened my front door in Wokingham, Berks on 13th January to see this Spring Usher flying around the outside light."

Spring Usher
Photo © Eddie Napper

~ Monday 12th January 2009 ~

David Redhead sent the first moth report for 2009: "Following the very low temperatures overnight on 6th January I thought I ought to do a safety check on the header water tanks in the lofts of our house in Littlemore, Oxon and my Mother-in-Law's next door. I am pleased to report all was well and whilst up there I decided to do a wildlife check. My Mother-in-Law easily won the contest as her loft contained twelve intact hibernating Peacock butterflies, a Herald Moth and the nest of a solitary wasp. In spite of the overnight temperature falling to -2.1C on the 8th, the next morning (9th January) I was surprised to find two Winter Moths on her kitchen window (light left on all night) which had been vacant the previous day. I also need to report that four Blue-bordered Carpet Moth eggs were found on New Year's Day at the RSPB Reserve along with a girdle of Lackey Moth eggs. A second girdle was also found but I was told that was a previous year's as all the eggs had hatched."

Lackey Moth eggs
Photo © Jim Asher

~ Wednesday 31st December 2008 ~

Final Moth Species count for 2008 was 766.

Dave Wilton took his trap to Finemere Wood on 22nd December in order to escape the Christmas preparations for a few hours: "I caught Acleris hastiana (2), Acleris ferrugana/notana (6), Winter Moth (109), Pale Brindled Beauty (1), Spring Usher (2), Scarce Umber (1), Mottled Umber (34), Satellite (2) & Chestnut (1). Spring Usher was a bit of a surprise."

David Redhead reported the following on 23rd December: "The milder weather encouraged me to fire up the garden moth trap (Littlemore, Oxon) on Sunday evening, 21st December. It produced 4 Winter Moths, 2 Mottled Umbers and a Pale Brindled Beauty. Nothing small except for 6 small Caddis Flies."

Ched George sent the following report on 20th December: "I found a Brick alive and well in the road in Radnage, Bucks on December 19th. There appear to be clouds of presumably Diurnea fagella flying in the local lanes at present."

20/12/08 - Peter Hall added the following micros to the 2008 species list: "Here are a couple more that I've just got round to checking under the microscope. Dave Wilton and I trapped Coleophora gryphipennella in Chinkwell Wood on July 10th (see Dave's report dated 14th July). Also Coleophora albitarsella here at Ballinger Common on July 13th."

~ Saturday 20th December 2008 ~

Dave Wilton sent the following on 11th December: "Moth activity at Westcott all but ceased during the recent cold snap, although I did find an example of Agonopterix arenella flying around inside the garage on 10th December. However, with thanks once again to Peter Hall, I do have a final batch of species to add to the UTB list from warmer times a few months ago. The following are all from sites in Bucks: Acleris aspersana (Westcott 10/8), Agonopterix conterminella (Finemere 26/8), Agonopterix subpropinquella (River Ray Reserves 24/8), Anacampsis populella (Kingswood 20/8), Autumnal Moth (Rushbeds 24/10), Bactra furfurana (Rushbeds 25/7), Batrachedra praeangusta (Rushbeds 25/7), Cacoecimorpha pronubana (Westcott 19/8), Calamatropha paludella (Westcott 28/7), Caloptilia robustella (Finemere 15/8), Coleophora coracipennella (Westcott 23/7), Coleophora peribenanderi (Westcott 23/7), Coleophora saxicolella (Westcott 27/7), Eana incanana (Rushbeds 25/7), Endothenia marginana (Gallowsbridge Farm 22/7), Epagoge grotiana (Rushbeds 25/7), Epinotia solandriana (Kingswood 20/8), Epinotia tenerana (Westcott 21/8), Eudonia angustea (Westcott 30/8), Gelechia nigra (Rushbeds 25/7), Gelechia rhombella (Rushbeds 25/7), Lesser Common Rustic (Rushbeds 25/7), Mompha jurassicella (Westcott 9/10), Monochroa lucidella (Westcott 23/7), Monochroa lutulentella (Gallowsbridge Farm 22/7), Monopis weaverella (Finemere 26/8), Nemapogon wolffiella (Kingswood 20/8), Oegoconia deauratella (Westcott 23/7), Pammene populana (Finemere 13/9) and Trachycera suavella (Westcott 23/7)."

Wendy Wilson sent this report on 9th December: "This moth emerged from its pupa on Monday 8th December on a cultivated geranium which I had brought indoors for the winter from my garden in Gerrards Cross, Bucks. It is 10mm in length. Thanks to Martin Albertini for confirming the id as a Light Brown Apple Moth (Epiphyas postvittana)."

Epiphyas Postvittana
Photo © Wendy Wilson

On 26th November Margot Nicholls reported that this Palpita vitrealis moth had been on her kitchen ceiling in Flackwell Heath Bucks for 5 days: "It was in a different place each morning and has now disappeared. It was possibly feeding on Christmas cactus flowers or orchids but I'm not sure of that."
[In Goater's 'British Pyralid Moths' this moth is also named as Palpita unionalis. Peter Hall says this is only the second Bucks record of this species. The first was in Milton Keynes in 2006. It's also a new species for the UTB All-time Moth List - see the Moth Stats link at the top of this page.]

Palpita vitrealis
Photo © Margot Nicholls


  » Sightings Archive

top of page


Copyright Butterfly Conservation © 2007-2009 Upper Thames Branch
Privacy and Copyright Statement
Butterfly Conservation: Company limited by guarantee, registered in England (2206468)
Registered Office: Manor Yard, East Lulworth, Wareham, Dorset, BH20 5QP
Charity registered in England & Wales (254937) and in Scotland (SCO39268)