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Saturday, 27 May 2017

Unusual Visitor to Maenol - Very Welcome Though!

Two traps out last night, MV at the back and a large actinic with a 22w green tube at the front, both under the eaves so relatively sheltered.  I was awoken at just after 4am by a violent thunderstorm, checked the traps and decided to close them down, i.e. switched the lamps off, blocked the funnel entrances with cloths, and left the traps in place.

On opening the MV trap after breakfast this is what I saw:

I have never seen a Striped Hawk-moth before.  Neither have I seen a Poplar Lutestring, but I believe that I might have one here.  Perhaps someone will correct me if I'm wrong!

Apart from these, there were plenty of the usual suspects and, unusually, a few micros which I shall be examining more closely with a view to blogging later - if they're interesting enough!


  1. Very well done, Chris - terrific moths!

  2. Thanks Steve & Ian, I still can't believe my eyes, have to keep going to have another look. It's stunning. Can either of you confirm the Lutestring? It's quite similar to the Figure of 80 that you get, Ian, just has more cross-lines and lacks the 80 marking.

  3. I can`t see what else it could be, Chris. Poplar lutestring is a rare Carms beast. I recall Jon having it at Pembrey Forest and I should have it at/near Pwll, as there`s plenty of poplars and aspen locally - but I have n`t. Perhaps I should target some local stands.

  4. Jon caught Poplar Lutestring twice at Pembrey in June 2004 and once in June 2005; he also caught one at his parents' house (Nantgwyn) to the NW of Carmarthen in the exceptional immigration/wandering year of 2006. Yours is the 6th county record, Chris.

    Your Striped Hawkmoth is almost as rare (but even more mega!), as there are 6 previous county records: a very old one from pre-1905, two from 2003, and singles in 2004, 2006 and 2007.

  5. The first of the 2003 records was found by my then 11-year old son, who found it at the front door of the house..."Dad...what`s this pretty moth?"!!!

    1. I wonder if your son would remember the occasion, Ian!

  6. Brilliant Chris. You've done really well, great moths and two good records for the area!

  7. Thank you all for your comments and the information relating to the occurrence of the two species. Ian's point about the local availability of poplar/aspen is interesting because there's none in our immediate vicinity as far as I'm aware.

  8. There's a good lot of aspen just west of Cennarth, and I guess some more trees further east along the Teifi, but I suspect your Poplar L originated further afield! The coincidence of Jon's 2006 inland record is remarkable.