Friday, 19 August 2016

Prominents prominent

Lots of prominents of several species showing up here in Wolvercote, Oxfordshire: over recent days we've had Pale, Swallow, Iron and Coxcomb all show up several times: two specimens of the latter, which isn't a species we can expect every year, on 17th August. Brimstones remain very numerous, especially gathering around the trap at night rather than necessarily coming into it; and a Canary-shouldered Thorn, also on 17th August, felt rather autumnal.

Canary-shouldered Thorn, 17/8/16

Coxcomb Prominent, 15/8/16
As usual, some micro-related puzzles: a rather poorly-photographed Aethes sp. possibly cnicana, from 15th August; what might be an Ancylis achatana, about 8mm long, from 17th August; a possible Dichrorampha sp., around 7mm long, from 16th August; and an Yponomeuta sp., just possibly not the usual evonymella, also from 16th August.

Possible Aethes cnicana, 15/8/16

Possible Ancylis achatana, 17/8/16

Possible Dichrorampha sp., 17/8/16

Yponomeuta sp., 16/8/16
Finally, I'm as sure as I can be that the beast below, from 15th August, isn't even a moth... but it's quite a nice specimen, and I might just be wrong - if anyone can identify it, or help with any of the micros, we would as ever be grateful.

Steve and Xander Goddard

Probably not a moth, 15/8/16


  1. Your Aethes looks like Cochylis molliculana and the Ancylis looks more like one of the many colour forms of Epinotia nisella but less confident of that one. BW, Marc

  2. Hi Steve & Xander, I'm not quite sure how you got to Aethes for the first micro. As Mark says, it is definitely a Cochylis although I wouldn't like to say if it is molliculana or perhaps a faded dubitana. A agree with Marc that the second is almost certainly Epinotia nisella, the third is indeed a Dichrorampha and will probably be a faded D. acuminatana but it would need dissection to be sure. The Yponomeuta sp. is just that, while your 'Probably not a moth' is a smart caddis in the genus Athripsodes, probably A. albifrons as it appears to have a white head.

  3. Thanks, both, and apologies, Dave, for the Aethes confusion: I think I picked up on the brownish tinge to the markings and jumped to conclusions.


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