Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Grass Rivulet? and others

I don't think I have changed my mind so many times as I did yesterday as to whether or not to put the trap out. I'm glad I did as I caught my first ever Lime Hawk-moth.
I would appreciate some help with the following.
I wondered if the first was the dark form of the Clouded-bordered Brindle (I certainly had one of the light ones). A tentative Grey Pine Carpet for the second and Grass Rivulet for the other two (the size is right).

Andy Newbold,  Sibford Ferris, Oxon.


  1. Hi Andy, moths seem able to cope with drizzle and light rain very well and indeed wet nights can provide some of the best catches when it is warm. As rain does have an effect on radar I wonder if wet nights make bats less efficient at hunting. If so I would expect moths to have developed to make maximum use of it - sounds like a good PhD project for someone.

    As to your pictures, that is indeed the dark form of Clouded-bordered Brindle and I'd agree with your two Grass Rivulets. I don't think your Carpet picture provides sufficient information to make a judgement, though. Grey Pine and Spruce can sometimes be quite difficult to separate and occasionally they need very close examination, either via dissection or a very good view of their antennae.

  2. Thank you. The comments on moths, bats and rain are interesting. Rain certainly doesn't seem to reduce catches as much as low temperatures or wind. That week of NE winds really affected catches here which is why I am trying to get the trap out as much as possible to catch up a bit. Unfortunately I don't have the carpet any more. I have tried enlarging all the images I have to look at the antennae and on balance I think they are more thread like than toothed but not clear enough to be sure.

  3. Further to my previous reply. Confirmation of the Grass Rivulets was reassuring as I was hesitant because as far as I am aware there is no Yellow-rattle in the vicinity. Last night I caught two more Grey Pine/Spruce Carpets and managed to get them under the microscope. With reference to the link you recommended and looking at the antennae it was very clear I had one of each!


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