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Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Vertical sweeping

When walking through woodland I often see moths zooming off tree trunks and flying wildly away.  Eudonia/Scoparia species are particularly prone to doing this, but various Gelechids and the genus Argyresthia also commonly rest on trunks.  I often find it's effective to sweep my net vertically up and down along tree trunks, particularly if there are some 'epicormic' growths of twigs, as the micros launch off into the net. 

This technique was very successful during a brief stop at Allt Ceiliog, Cenarth in the far NW of Carmarthenshire today.  Three species of Argyresthia were highlights, along with a Bucculatrix cidarella that I beat from Alder.  I was impressed by the abundance of mature and sapling Aspen: somewhere to target with an MV some time.

All of the following are very small, so tested my camera to its limits!

Argyresthia brockeella (Gold IW) swept from Birch

Argyresthia goedartella (Gold IVI) swept from Alder

Argyresthia retinella swept from Birch

Bucculatrix cidarella beaten from Alder; note the dark colour, 4 white marks, and pale eye-caps


  1. Interesting technique Sam - I must try that. Those scoparids really are flighty aren't they.

  2. It's also good for Bateachedra praeangusta and Gelechia sororculella from willow and Hypatima rhomboidella from birch.