Monday, 28 April 2014

Last night`s catch at home (27/4) and Mynydd Llangyndeyrn today (28/4)

It looked ok to trap last night (overcast and mild), so out went the actinic onto the flat roof. About a dozen species of moths were awaiting me this morning, including my FFY clouded silver (wish it was a silver cloud though!) and two scalloped hazels.
                                         Above: clouded silver.
                                          Above: scalloped hazel.

This morning, I went to Mynydd Llangyndeyrn (aka `Crwbin Common`), on the high ridge between the two Gwendraeth valleys, to recce and to see what I could find. There`s some `nice habitat` at this site and a linear depression along the `strike` of the strata is very swampy, with much marsh marigold. The flowers had the very first of the presumed vanguard of the little micro-moth Micropterix calthella (which is often found in buttercups later in May).
                              Above: Caltha-swamp and the acidic dip-slopes at Mynydd Llangyndeyrn.

In some dried-up Molinia, I chanced upon a drinker caterpillar:
Sweeping the heather and bell heather on the dry, quartzite slopes, I flushed a couple of common heaths. Note the feathery antennae in the male below, which distinguishes it (amongst other things) from the similar latticed heath (where the antennae are unfeathered and simple).
                                          Above: male common heath.
Above: some of the dry heath. I also caught a distinctively-marked micro in this area....which I think is Neofaculta ericetella (I have retained the specimen).
Anyway, four more moth records for SN41 so far in 2014!


  1. Remember that Micropterix in dry areas are often M aruncella (only males have the silver bands). It's safest to record M calthella when in cop. Can you photo the distinctive micro?

  2. I`ll go back to collect Sam....I`m planning a repeat visit in the next c 3 wks. It`ll hopefully be `main season` calthella then. I tried to photo it `in situ` yesterday but the photo was terrible, even by my standards!

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