Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Mega Moth And The Levels

As this is a birding blog I should really start with the birdies, but moth enthusiasts, it is certainly worth staying with me as I captured a right beaut last night! :-)

Yesterday morning, I took Karen up the Somerset Levels, it was superb! We had six Bittern sightings, and three more booming males - what an awesome noise! Only views we had were flight views, but some close and most prolonged...

Fine birds! Great to see them doing so well too

Hobbys were numerous as always, with some superb views of these too...

Probably saw 15+ of these in all

Waders were represented by a few Lapwing, six Blackwits, three Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin. The duck selection included the usual Pochards, Tufted Ducks and Gadwalls. We saw and heard at least three Cuckoos, and warblers were plentiful, with three of these....

Garden Warbler

I also wanted to come here to get a couple of Odonata ticks. 'Tarty ones' at that, although I'm sure I've seen them both in my younger days! Most wanted was Hairy Hawker, I managed to see two of these. They weren't very photogenic though, the best I managed was this...

At least it's the best half of one!!!

Variable Damselfly was the other 'tick', they were surprisingly numerous...

Note the broken ante-humeral stripes

Also plenty of the usual suspects in the Odonata department, including several 'new for the year' species for me.

Back on patch, the only birdie news I have is of a pair of Spotted Flycatchers at Horriford Farm this morning, busy building a nest.

Ok moth people, the time has come....nearly!! I'll get Monday night's catch out of the way first...

I had just 17 moths of 9 species. There was one new for the garden though, which was this...

Treble Lines; if only all moth names were this obvious!!

The rest of the moths were: 4 Hebrew Character, 3 Flame Shoulder, 3 Brimstone, 2 Pebble Prominent, and singles of: Water Carpet, Green Carpet, Shuttle-shaped Dart and Common Quaker.

As I went to bed last night, it was clear there were loads of moths about. Should have put both traps out really, and I should have woken up earlier than 06:15 this morning! I'm sure the local birds had a right feast before I got up!!! Anway, I still had 34 moths of 20 species - my largest catch of the year so far.

It was nice to have a bit of a rarity, with a species that is on the Red List (it's also a Biodiversity Action Plan priority species - but this might mean the same as 'being on the Red List!). There are very few breeding sites in the UK, all on the south coast between here and Kent. They are present on the cliffs at Branscombe, so I guess this one was a wanderer from there. Great to get one in the garden though...

White Spot; a gorgeous moth!

Had three other firsts for the garden, though they were much more run-of-the-mill...

Early Tooth-striped

May Highflyer

Small White Wave

The other 30 moths were: 5 Pug sp. (still hate the brown ones, prob all Brindled), 4 Brimstone, 3 Nut-tree Tussock, 3 Hebrew Character, 2 Waved Umber, 2 Pebble Prominent, 2 Flame Shoulder, and singles of: Iron Prominent, Pale Tussock, Garden Carpet, Foxglove Pug (I can do these!!), Common Quaker, Vine's Rustic, Heart and Dart, Knot Grass and Muslin Moth. There was also a Cockchafer in the trap. As you can see (if you've been following my mothing antics) there were several new species for the year in this catch.

I'm going to put both traps out tonight, and I must get used to having no sleep!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment