Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Maiden Voyage............

After a few weeks of designing, making and researching light sources and materials it was time for the test run of the prototype model. This is a derivative of a conventional Skinner trap and is fully portable. It runs on a 12v Yuasa battery and all of the wires and running gear are concealed under a trap door in the main chamber. It benefits from a flush mounted light sensitive switch which can be adjusted to come on in various light conditions. You can also manually turn the trap off and on using a toggle switch. It is running an 8w clear UV lamp, but can be inter changed with an actinic or UV 'disco light'. At present the battery life is 18+ hours using the current lighting method.
The tube is suspended without the use of a rail, therefore not wasting any light and the inside is brilliant white which again will reflect light outwards. The trap is light weight and fully collapsible, it is also simply to open the trap door and retrieve the battery for charging (a trickle charge with an inexpensive car battery charger does the trick!)

In addition, we have designed a fully collapsible canopy to prevent the electrics (and the egg boxes and moths) getting a good soaking.
All in all on paper it looked good..............but would all the development work pay off?
Off course it did, look at the posting below!

Sweet Chestnut!........24/02

.........and this is the result of the 1st testing. This Chestnut was found lurking under the egg boxes, as well as a 4th Early Moth record nearby on the shed.
A Successful 1st outing for a humble 8 watter. The battery powered the trap for at least 18 hours (possibly up to 22), which means it could be upgraded with a more powerful tube. More testing needed but a good start none the less.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Mystery Catty?

This was taken last September- as yet haven't a clue?...................
The general consensus is Cabbage Moth in its pre pupation stage.......

Angle Shades...................

Fairly convinced this is what these are, it could be a flavour of what's in store later on in Spring!

Lodge Micro?.........07/02

This Micro was almost overlooked. In my defence it was only about 10mm long. Having trawled UK Moths, I'm still none the wiser!

Looks likely to be #1053/54 Acleris cristana/hastiana, an extremely variable species of Tortricidae per David Manning.

The Lodge.......07/02

Another trip up to The Lodge this Sunday with the kids and a few moths to boot!
  • Winter Moth x4
  • Pale Brindled Beauty x2- including a monacharia (photo top)
  • March Moth (middle)
  • Grey Shouder-knot (bottom)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

The 1st Micro of the year.........05/02

I could be wrong, but I believe this is an Agonopterix heracliana.
This is a hibernating species that apparently flies from September right through Winter and is common. I'm just waiting for confirmation from Mr. Manning..........
Also another different Pale Brindled Beauty. But a further cold snap is on it's way and the trap will be moth-balled for a week or so.
I.D Confirmed......Many thanks David.

Thursday, February 4, 2010


Species no. 7 for the year is this Pale Brindled Beauty, another garden 1st ever in 2010. The only moth 'caught' as it is still pretty cold out there!

The Mothmen Prophecy!

The Moth-ers of Invention get ready for the 1st ever Beds Moth Group meeting in Lower Stondon. Note: New moth T-shirts, kindly bought as a Christmas present by Kristy. Also a copy of Waring and Lewington's excellent field guide.

Special thanks to Andy, Melissa and David for their time and effort.