Saturday, 19 July 2014

Moth trapping again!

Puffins and manx shearwaters sighted from the boats this week... But I wasn't on them; I was in labs. Feeling left out, I decided to put out the moth trap. The next day I was treated to lots of new months, mainly brown, and I felt the familiar feeling of confusion. 

The first to be identified were two rather lovely Hebrew character, Orthosia gothica. These moths are found across a range of habitats between March and April (although sometimes later). The moth takes its name from the dark mark on the wing, which resembles the Hebrew letter Nun. 

Hebrew Character

There were also 2 large yellow underwing, Noctua pronuba; unfortunately, the shots below do not show the egg-yolk yellow hind wings, they're really striking. They can be seen all over the UK, flying form July to September.

Below right is a spruce carpet, Thera britannica. Spruce carpet moths are less common in Scotland, flying in two phases, April to late June (spring brood) and from the end of August to mid October (autumn brood). Obviously the weather and latitude have affected the emergence time of these individuals.

Large Yellow Underwing
Spruce Carpet

There were also a number of cream moths, 2 square spots and a riband wave, Idaea aversata. Found throughout Britain, it tends to fly between June and August.

Erm.... we think its a Riband Wave...

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