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Monday, 2 November 2015

Ample pickings at Pwll...

Yesterday, the first day of the month, was fine and gloriously sunny - indeed, record temperatures for November and, as the forecast predicted some clouding over and fog overnight, out went one actinic trap in the garden. This morning`s haul was n`t bad at all for the time of year - 17 species of moth in just one trap. The moths were: light emerald, red-line quaker, yellow-line quaker, merveille du jour, silver y, large wainscot, common marbled carpet, setaceous hebrew character, feathered thorn, November moth agg., snout, brick, chestnut, spruce carpet, flounced chestnut, Eudonia angustea and Acleris sparsana.

                                                         Above: feathered thorn.
Above: November moth agg. I like the way that the feathery edges of the wings help camouflage the moth and make it blend in.

                                                                     Above: snout.
                                                               Above: large wainscot.
                                         Above: everyone`s favourite - a merveille du jour.

Whilst doing some shed repairs for someone yesterday afternoon, I noticed this large and broad (in terms of body size) harvestman lurking on some wood. It is a female Odiellus spinosus, a species that used to be confined to S and SE England, but it has spread in recent years and I`ve had it previously in the Llanelli area. Hillyard and Sankey (1989) state that `it appears to have a preference for warm, sheltered man-made gardens, parks, around buildings and on derelict sites`, which agrees with the habitats where I`ve had it - back-lanes, on old walls etc. It`s worth looking out for and, body-wise, it really is a plump whopper! Note the three-pronged `trident` below the eyes - click on photo to enlarge.


  1. Well done, Ian. You had 11 species which did not show at Cwmllwyd on 31 October, whereas we had Brimstone, Red-green Carpet, Black Rustic, Dusky Thorn x 4 and Acleris laterana: the only species seen at both sites were M du J, Brick, Chestnut, November Moth agg. and Acleris sparsana. I very much doubt whether anything of value can be read into this stat, however.

  2. Keep on trapping (on suitable nights) Steve, as perhaps you may be the best `runner` for a sprawler....we had a late submission of one last year (with photo etc) from a BBNP upland-edge farm approx S of Llandovery.