Monday, February 24, 2014

The first stirrings...........

............finally appeared after the worst start to a year I've ever had. In fact up until the 16th February, I had only recorded three species; Pale Brindled Beauty, Agonopterix heracliana and Emmelina monodactyla. To be honest I hadn't really put the trap out much, electing to use the single BLB bulb on the shed at the bottom of the garden. On 17th February the wind had finally died down, it had stopped raining and the temperature had increased, so I put out two traps as well as using the bulb.
A quick patrol at 8.00pm revealed a single Ypsolopha ustella, attracted to the bulb, that evaded capture. A moth I didn't see last year. The rest I found in the morning.

Upper Caldecote Garden- 17-02-14 7 of 6 species-

0461  Ypsolopha ustella  1 NFY BLB Bulb
0688  Agonopterix heracliana  2 BLB Bulb
1663  March Moth (Alsophila aescularia)  1 NFY Twin 20w Synergetic Skinner
1932  Spring Usher (Agriopis leucophaearia) 1 NFY Twin 15w Actinic Skinner
2236  Pale Pinion (Lithophane hepatica) 1 NFY  Twin 20w Synergetic Skinner
2258  Chestnut (Conistra vaccinii) NFY  1 Twin 20w Synergetic Skinner


March Moth

 Pale Pinion

Spring Usher

The night after, another night with three lights burning produced two more NFYs. Singles of Dark Chestnut and Hebrew Character brought the years total to 11 species.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Belated review- 2013

Firstly, remember this? The original post is HERE. Well, it seems almost certain that this was indeed a Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet. There doesn't appear to be any red in the 'bar' whatsoever. But despite this, a gen. det. by Andy Banthorpe found it just to be a plain old Red Twin-spot. So back to the drawing board to find this species, not seen in VC30 since 2010.

 Red Twin-spot Carpet
 Caught by Actinic light- 7th May 2013

A total of 522 species were recorded in the garden in 2013.

I recorded 218 species in 2013, below is a list of the 33 new additions for the year. All species requiring gen. dets. have been confirmed by the David Manning- VC30 micro moth recorder.

0099 Stigmella hybnerella
0254 Leucoptera laburnella Laburnum Leaf Miner
0266 Bucculatrix nigricomella
0293 Caloptilia syringella
0318 Phyllonorycter tenerella
0325 Phyllonorycter mespilella New for VC30
0358 Phyllonorycter froelichiella
0385 Anthophila fabriciana
0428 Yponomeuta rorrella Willow Ermine
0495 Coleophora spinella Apple & Plum Case-bearer
0559 Coleophora peribenanderi
0563 Coleophora argentula
0602 Elachista apicipunctella
0629 Biselachista utonella
0718 Ethmia dodecea
0719 Ethmia quadrillella
0737 Monochroa palustrella
0756 Parachronistis albiceps
0822 Scrobipalpa acuminatella
0868 Helcystogramma rufescens
0877 Stathmopoda pedella
0879 Batrachedra pinicolella
0936 Cochylimorpha straminea
0987 Ptycholomoides aeriferanus
1023 Cnephasia genitalana
1097 Endothenia gentianaeana
1165 Zeiraphera isertana
1168 Gypsonoma sociana
1192 Eucosma conterminana
1329 Donacaula forficella
1354 Cataclysta lemnata Small China-mark
1454b Dioryctria sylvestrella
1495 Marasmarcha lunaedactyla

0719 Ethmia quadrillella
Garden first- 14th July 2013

I recorded 304 species in 2013, below is the list of 36 new additions for the year. If required, all contentious species were confirmed by A & M Banthorpe- VC30 macro moth recorders.

1652 Thyatira batis Peach Blossom
1720 Orthonama obstipata  Gem
1722 Xanthorhoe designata Flame Carpet
1736 Catarhoe cuculata  Royal Mantle
1749 Pelurga comitata Dark Spinach
1788 Rheumaptera cervinalis Scarce Tissue
1792 Philereme transversata Dark Umber
1807 Perizoma albulata Grass Rivulet
1816 Eupithecia linariata Toadflax Pug
1874 Euchoeca nebulata Dingy Shell
1882 Pterapherapteryx sexalata  Small Seraphim
1889 Macaria notata Peacock Moth
1907 Epione repandaria Bordered Beauty
1920 Odontopera bidentata Scalloped Hazel
1944 Hypomecis punctinalis Pale Oak Beauty
1962 Hylaea fasciaria  Barred Red
1984 Macroglossum stellatarum   Humming-bird Hawk-moth
1992 Deilephila porcellus Small Elephant Hawk-moth
2014 Drymonia dodonaea Marbled Brown
2035 Thumatha senex Round-winged Muslin
2039 Atolmis rubricollis Red-necked Footman
2049 Eilema depressa Buff Footman
2105 Rhyacia simulans Dotted Rustic
2119 Peridroma saucia Pearly Underwing
2120 Diarsia mendica Ingrailed Clay
2223 Calophasia lunula Toadflax Brocade
2276 Xanthia ocellaris Pale-lemon Sallow
2323 Apamea sublustris Reddish Light Arches
2326 Apamea crenata Clouded-bordered Brindle
2331 Apamea unanimis Small Clouded Brindle
2335 Apamea scolopacina  Slender Brindle
2336 Apamea ophiogramma Double Lobed
2345 Photedes minima Small Dotted Buff
2399 Pyrrhia umbra Bordered Sallow
2400 Helicoverpa armigera Scarce Bordered Straw
2410 Protodeltote pygarga  Marbled White Spot

Peach Blossom
Garden First- 12th July 2013

............And now onto the wine.

The remit at the beginning of 2013 was for the contest to take place over a decent bottle of red wine to the value of £10 or more.

We won't go into statistics, (it will take too long) but safe to say both Trent and Ben had their arses handed to them last year!
Ben Sale
A plucky effort, that very early on, fell on stony ground. So far I haven't heard a lot from Ben, but consider him an honourable man. I think Stevenage could be a problem for him though, as quality wine shops could be a bit few and far between. Ben is a relative newcomer to said town, but has probably realised that most of the indigenous people prefer to drink alternatives such as HSL, Carlsberg Special Brew and Meths.
Ben- I await your offering!
Trent Duval
Trent made huge efforts in 2013 and early on at least he was the front runner, but through Summer and Autumn he took a real spanking. Last week, I managed to finally prise some wine out of him. Trent went more for quantity than quality, though that being said. Lindeman's Tollana punches well above it's weight for a wine of just £4.00 per bottle. This is a half price offer from Asda, so making his 3 bottle deal an acceptable offering.

Lindeman's Tollana
Acceptable- if you get three!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

While I wait................

.............for something to actually happen in the garden this year, it was nice to get a modicum of success with the Pearly Underwings (see this POST). After the eggs hatched , I fed them on Dandelion leaves. Unfortunately, most didn't make it and the larvae just died as they reached their final instar. Then out of the four that pupated, just two hatched and developed into adults. One hatched and died before developing its wings and one is still in the pupal case presumed to be dead. I don't know why the mortality rate was so high- perhaps the food plant?

Pearly Underwing Pupae
Just four out of the sixty plus larvae that hatched from eggs in mid November 2013 made it to Pupa.

Pearly Underwings
 Just two survived to adulthood and hatched 18th January. They were released in Bigglewade a few days later. But I really don't know if a migratory species will survive a British winter?