Friday, 22 September 2017


A couple of unusual things have appeared in the garden trap here over the last two nights.  The first was from Wednesday night, a miniature Flounced Rustic with a forewing length of only 12mm (about the same size as a Marbled Minor).

Flounced Rustic, Westcott 20th September

The second was a Common Pug which came to light last night.  July/August records of the species are quite regular, suggesting a second brood, but this seems very late indeed even for that.  Since the millennium there have been four other September records in Bucks, two in 2003 and two in 2009 (24th September 2009 from Loosley Row being the latest).

Common Pug, Westcott 21st September

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks   

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Like London Buses... wait for ages then three come along at once.  I've never found Stigmella assimilella an easy leaf-mine to locate despite there being plenty of aspen locally.  A quick look at a young sapling on the old land-fill at nearby Woodham, Bucks early this afternoon produced the usual plethora of grazing signs everywhere but then I spotted the obvious mines below, three active ones on the same leaf:

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Just checking - Beaded Chestnut

Just checking this is a Beaded Chestnut, the first for the year.

The Black Rustics are out, so are the Brown-Spot Pinion and Lunar Underwings.

Mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford.

Hoary Footman

Amongst the moths attracted to our house lights (Loosley Row, Bucks) last night was this Hoary Footman. Quite a docile specimen, it sat perfectly still as I checked its hindwings.

Rammamere Heath, Bucks

Probably the final one of my monthly visits this season to Rammamere Heath on the Bucks/Beds border, a trip there last night produced just short of 40 species, none of them unexpected.  Only the one moth was worthy of comment:  Autumnal Rustic is not at all common in Bucks but last night it proved to be the most abundant species seen with 34 trapped altogether.

Autumnal Rustic, Rammamere Heath 20th September

Other species seen included Mallow, Feathered Thorn and Brown-spot Pinion, all of which were my first sightings for this year.

Feathered Thorn, Rammamere Heath 20th September

A Mallow appeared at Westcott last night too but unfortunately it had succumbed to a bat attack and the only evidence left for me to see was a single forewing.  It was one of 28 species attracted to the garden actinic light (in excess of 150 moths altogether), of which Deep-brown Dart and Beaded Chestnut were also new for 2017.  As is usual at this time of year, only about half of those moths actually entered the trap and the rest were found spread around the lawn.  Lunar Underwings, of which 31 were recorded, seem to be the most adept at hiding between blades of grass and can be particularly difficult to spot. 

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Willow Beauty larva?

I think this is a Willow Beauty larva, it was found crawling up our garage yesterday. Length is approx. 35mm.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Late Marbled Beauty

Although there was nothing new for the year, more than 80 moths of 26 species to the garden actinic trap last night seemed quite a good result considering that it rained until midnight then the temperature fell sharply under clear skies.  Rather unexpected was the Marbled Beauty below, which the books say flies in July and August, but on checking I see that there have been a good number of records throughout September in Bucks for well over a decade now and even one for October. 

Marbled Beauty, Westcott 18th September

The rest of last night's catch comprised Acleris variegana (1), Epiphyas postvittana (1), Celypha lacunana (1), Eudonia angustea (2), Common Marbled Carpet (3), Double-striped Pug (1), Brimstone Moth (7), Lilac Beauty (1), Light Emerald (3), Turnip Moth (1), Large Yellow Underwing (13), Lesser Yellow Underwing (3), Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing (1), Setaceous Hebrew Character (4), Square-spot Rustic (8), Common Wainscot (3), Black Rustic (4), Lunar Underwing (13), Centre-barred Sallow (2), Sallow (3), Copper Underwing (1), Flounced Rustic (1), Dark Arches (1), Pale Mottled Willow (2) & Snout (2).  Further items new for the year over the previous couple of nights included Cypress Pug (17th) and Pink-barred Sallow (16th).

Pink-barred Sallow, Westcott 16th September

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Monday, 18 September 2017

New sightings in Speen

Last night I saw 2 yellow brimstones, a square spot rustic and a snout. But I think I also saw 2 eudonia angustias. They were less than a centimetre long. Please can someone confirm if I've got it right. Thanks.

Merton, Oxfordshire

Along with the usual early Autumn moths in the garden Skinner 2x30W Actinic trap last night, a Cypress Pug:

Query on a leafmine - Longwick

Ran the trap for the first time in a while last night with limited success. A rather battered acleris holmiana and a lilac beauty being the main points of interest in an otherwise hum drum collection of early autumn species.

However my query is this mine found this morning on jasmine. Of course it may not be lepidopterous but I couldn't see an obvious candidate

Friday, 15 September 2017

Westcott, Bucks

At last some ivy flowers have begun to open in the garden and at last a couple of the common autumn moth species have started to appear in the trap.  On Wednesday night I had my first examples of both Sallow and Lunar Underwing.  The Lunar Underwing was one of the typical grey examples, which are by far the most common form here, while last night a brown one turned up.

Sallow, Westcott 13th September

Lunar Underwing, Westcott 13th September

Lunar Underwing, Westcott 14th September

Dave Wilton
Westcott, Bucks

Macro Moths

Is the Upper Thames Moth site sponsoring, or have any intention of sponsoring, anything in the new book which is due next year.
I notice that other groups seem to be doing so as ,of course, do individuals if they wish.

At last...Brown Spot Pinion

I think the first proper autumnal species here. Hopefully more to come but this year some regular moths have been entirely absent I think.

Mark Griffiths, Garsington, Oxford

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Macro ID help needed

The lack of markings on the first one has had me going round in circles. (length 18mm).
The second I thought might be a Pale Mottled Willow although I can't see any white spots around the kidney-mark. (length 14mm).
The final picture of a wasp/fly?? was from last week. Not something I have had in my trap before.

Andy Newbold, Sibford Ferris, Oxon.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

another ClIfden Nonpareil

After two in 2015 in my garden in Henwick, Thatcham, and one in daylight on August bank holiday Monday this year another turned up tonight, so hopefully evidence of a local colony. I've noticed that they are reluctant  to to enter a trap, but prefer to perch outside, so perhaps a good idea to check around the trap now and again during these darker evenings.

More ID help please

I'd appreciate some help identifying these moths please. The first one looks a bit worn. I'm guessing that I might also have a fan-tail and maybe a wainscot. Thanks in anticipation.