Saturday, 17 November 2018

Thursday at Pwll and Stradey (Llanelli)

I put my two garden traps out at Pwll on Thursday 15/11, which is very likely to be the last time I shall be trapping there; another trap was left out at my new `HQ` in the Stradey area on the western outskirts of Llanelli, abutting woodland and - unfortunately - houses.
I did not have any joy in terms of scarcer migrants such as the gem that turned up at Maenol or the out-of-county Palpita vitrealis, caught by Barry Stewart in not too far away Gorseinon.
I did, however, catch a rusty-dot pearl and what I think is a turnip (I don`t have access to my moth i/d books for the next couple of days) and also several silver y`s as migratory representatives.
Other moths of interest were three satellites at Pwll, where my first winter moth of the season was also caught. Additionally, a cypress carpet was caught at both Pwll and Stradey, the latter location being a nice surprise. Ominously, numbers of other moths at the latter site were much lower (eg just one feathered thorn at Stradey compared to 16 at Pwll), and I also suspect that my days of getting `good` wetland and coastal moths at my garden trap site are now over (goodbye cream-bordered green peas etc!). I`ll have to do more away-from-home trapping in 2019.

                              Above: a rather grainy in situ photo of the Pwll cypress carpet.
           Above: one of the three satellites caught at Pwll with the presumed turnip moth.
                                     Above: the single rusty-dot pearl that turned up at Pwll.

Friday at Cwmllwyd.

Not quite as productive as the traps of Jane and Chris (only 20 moths of 8 species), but these included a further four Red Sword-grass, bring the total for the year to ten. The big disappointment has been the absence this year of Autumn Green Carpet, not seen at all, following only one showing here in 2017.

That's Better!

This Gem landed on a window close to my actinic trap last evening.  I could easily have missed it. a rather insignificant little moth, but for the bright discal spots which reflected the light from the trap.  This is the second record for the site, the first being on 14 June last year.

Gem apart it was another lack-lustre return for the trap - only one trap last night, the MV was rested.  A mere 13 moths of 7 species were recorded.

Friday, 16 November 2018

Modest Returns at Maenol

Following the advice of Lords & Masters (don't I always!) I put MV and actinic traps out last night, but recorded only a dozen species.  One immigrant - Dark Swordgrass - and no surprises amongst the others, in no particular order: Mottled Umber. Feathered Thorn, Red Swordgrass, Red-green Carpet, Spruce Carpet, December Moth, Epirrita sp., Angle Shades, Chesnut, Red- and Yellow-Line Quakers, all in ones or twos.

I do hope that others were more successful!  I shall put one trap out tonight, but the weather is set to get colder next week so I'll probably give it a rest.

Friday, 9 November 2018

Thick as a brick...

`Thick as a brick` - me that is, not the moth. The moth shown below came to the kitchen window light yesterday evening (9/11) and when first seen I thought `bordered straw`; it was then placed in the fridge in a rather cloudy plastic container. Noticing that it was small, I even thought `eastern bordered straw` (typically getting carried away!) but - sadly - when I looked more carefully at it later my fantasies were shattered. It was a brick.

Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Diurnea lipsiella


A Diurnea lipsiella came to the Cnwc-y-llwyn porch light on 3/11 along with November and December Moths.  This is a surprisingly scarce moth in Carmarthenshire, with just 14 records prior to 2018: it was annual at Ty'r Ysgol, Rhandirmwyn between 1980 and 1989 (Jane really should be catching them!), 1 was caught by Stephen Ruttle at Graig in October 2016 and one was caught by me at Cnwc in November 2009.  My 2009 record was rather frustrating, as I photographed it under the porch light and the camera deleted the date so I don't know exactly when I saw it; indeed for several months I didn't know what it was either, and I almost abandoned it as an unidentifiable mystery Tortricid.  Steve Clarke's record from Cwmllwyd in October this year was the 15th for the county, and my one in these photos is the 16th.

A few sparklers on Bonfire Night

A decent catch awaited me this morning after a night when my traps had to compete with a sky lit up by numerous rockets (and many loud bangs) - that is the consequence of living at the edge of a large urban area. Guy Fawkes Night did however yield a few modest (moth) sparklers to brighten up the November gloom. Precisely twenty species were in the two garden traps this morning, the highlight being a cypress carpet. The long-hoped for white-speck failed to turn up again, in spite of warm southerlies, but at least there were two migrants in the traps, albeit just silver y`s.

                         Above: a rushed (and a bit blurry) photo of last night`s cypress carpet.