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Friday, 19 October 2018

Keeping dry...

Usually rain only bothers me if it occurs at inspection time in the morning and I personally get wet. The `electrics` of the trap can be safeguarded by careful wrapping in a bin bag, but sometimes the moths get spoiled by rainwater in the trap.
I`ve had in mind doing some form of shelter for sometime now and, recently, I asked the talented odd-job man/builder/carpenter who I`ve had working weekly on a house for the last two years to make me a couple of shelters for my traps, especially as there was both spare wood and clear corrugated plastic that had been used to make a mini-greenhouse.
The removable plastic top fits snugly onto the folding back and sides, locking the latter into place; the sides and back are open to allow access to the trap by moths and the clear plastic allows light to be seen from above. The trap is positioned with the sloping roof facing the predominant wind/rain direction (normally SW or W in this part of the world).
The only complication was finding a special hinge that allowed the wooden framework to fold absolutely flat for storage.
These covers, which (size-wise)  are suitable for both my actinic and MV traps would have been useful for Storm Callum last weekend, when I mostly missed out on rare migrants due to non-trapping. The lower cross bars of the wooden framework are deliberately set at the very bottom in order to allow `ballasting` in high winds.

                                                       Above: the cover from the front.
Above: side view.
  Above: looking down on one of the hinges (when the wooden framework is folded). This `special` hinge is only required on one side, to allow the framework to fold flat.
               Above: wooden framework and cover (behind) folded in storage position.


  1. I've had quite good results with a fishing umbrella over the trap. Matthew straps it to a post. The moths also settle on the underside of the brolly itself, especially this time of year. I'm going to show him your trap shelter though. Looks good.

  2. Very impressive, Ian, and it'll be very interesting to see how effective it is. Most of my rain-spoiled moths are ones that alight on the rain-shields, and no doubt your corrugated plastic sheet will gather a few. Whether the trap and its protective frame would have survived the 70mph winds and torrential rain of Storm Callum is open to question!

  3. Of course a simple cheap expedient for wet - but not TOO windy - nights is just four bamboo canes with a plastic sheet attached on top. Obviously only suitable for soft substrates such as a lawn.