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Sunday, 4 October 2015

A cold and clear night....

For various reasons, I have not been able to moth-trap (or undertake daytime recording) for 2-3 weeks but, encouraged by a forecast of cloudy skies last night (Sat. 3/10), I put out my garden traps `ready for action` at the early time of 6pm as it now gets dark only about an hour later.
It turned out that the weather forecast got the timing wrong, with the promised clouds only appearing about breakfast time and the cold, clear night yielded only nine species of moth, all singly or in small numbers including beaded chestnut, flounced chestnut, large wainscot and Blair`s shoulder-knot. Strangely, not one silver y was in either of the traps, though they were frequently seen nectaring in my garden during the preceding afternoon.
It`s still worth trapping if the night-time weather is right, particularly if you are `new to the game` and are trapping at a new site - this way you`ll get a more complete list for your trap site.
Good to read of Jon Baker`s efforts checking flowering ivy at Llansteffan - another worthwhile technique - and of the recent efforts of other Carmarthenshire moth stalwarts on the blog. Interesting also to read of Vaughn`s Haworth`s minor find (sadly in Ceredigion!) - I suspect that this moth is actually quite regular (if unrecorded) on cottongrass-rich mires and flushes in the north and east of the county.
I had a pre-hibernation male brimstone butterfly flying along the lane in front of my house on 1st October, and it made me think that the next time I`ll have a chance to see this butterfly again will be on one of those gloriously sunny days early in spring 2016.

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