I ran my moth-trap (for those who don’t know, this is just an eggbox-filled tub with a MV lamp which attracts the moths overnight: I release them all later and don’t collect/kill specimens) for the first time in ages last night. Last year I was trapping virtually every night and took hundreds of photos, most of which went on to a now defunct blog. I’m transferring all the old posts over here bit by bit and they can be found at http://www.talking-naturally.co.uk/tag/moths/, but I do miss running the trap and the amazing insects it attracts. Why don’t I do it more often? Mainly because Great Chalfield is a fantastic place for moths (abundant and diverse plant cover the caterpillars depend on, no pesticides, clean air, little light pollution, a sheltered garden) and it used to take me more than two hours to go through the trap some mornings (a nice problem to have, I know).
Anyway, last night was cloudy and muggy and perfect for mothing – and the trap was bursting this morning. I’m afraid I didn’t have time to do a full count, but there were at least thirty species including the ones photographed below plus eg Scorched Carpet, Gold Triangle, Double Square-spot, Dark/Grey Dagger, Buff Ermine, Browntail, Scarce and Common Footman, Buff Arches, Buff-tip, Coronet, Kent Black Arches and Dark Arches. Nothing to make an experienced lepidopterist jump around (and there are many in this part of the country), but I’m still a relative novice and it was lovely to see some old friends again!
Wax Moth (a pyralid that lives in beehives where the larvae feed on the honeycomb)