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Friday, 23 August 2013

On the Bog again! 23rd August 2013.

I seem to be having bad luck with bogs. The other night it was cold and clear when I trapped at two bogs in the Llannon-Tumble area and today, what proved to be a very brief daytime visit to Cors Goch Llanllwch was ruined by heavy rain! The raised bog at Llanllwch, Carmarthen (one of the most southerly in the UK), although much degraded and with serious drying out and successional problems, still supports good invertebrates, but with the moth fauna hardly known. The main purpose of my visit was to see if the bog bush cricket Metrioptera brachyptera was still present, here at its only Carmarthenshire site and a `long-shot` chance to see if the small red damselfly Ceriagrion tenellum (also at its only vice county station) was present, even though it was rather late in the season for the latter. I also wanted to `sweep` for moths.
In the event, the rain was starting as we approached the bog, but as it looked like a shower, we did not take heavy waterproofs for ease of movement. The periphery of the bog is badly overgrown with scrub and the path within the Wildlife Trust section is utterly bramble-choked with the Molinia tussocks making traversing the bog very difficult.
Then the rain came, soaking myself and Nigel Stringer and we decided to abandon the site, though luckily he had spotted a bog bush cricket, a photo of which is shown below. Note the part-bright apple-green colouration and the ovipositor on the tail showing this to be a female. It was pleasing to re-find this species as this year is the last year of recording for the Orthoptera Atlas, which will occupy my spare time for the rest of the summer/early autumn - there`s only most of Carmarthenshire left to cover! We did n`t look for the small red damselfly, or anything else, due to the rain.
A dull photo of the bog itself is also attached below, grey in the heavy rain, and a photo of some bog myrtle leaves with mines - any idea anyone? I`ve had a quick look on the `UK Leafmine` website, but no conclusive joy - any help would be appreciated.
A MV trap left out at Tyrwaun, Pwll last night had a fair selection of moths but the only one of note was a female four-spotted footman.


  1. Those are the mines of Bucculatrix cidarella. I'd guess they've been seen there before, probably by me when I mapped the bog a couple of years ago, but you never know...

    The privately owned northern part of the bog has better vegetation than the Wildlife Trust's bits although Molinia is taking over at both ends of the site. Access for trapping is tricky, which is one reason why it hasn't been properly done. A generator and MV should work well there, but would need to be carried in across a couple of fields.

  2. Thanks Sam....I have n`t been to the N part since c 1985 [it got burnt in c 1988, incidentally....might be a file note by me at the office].