Thursday, 27 September 2012

To trap, or not to trap...? (part II)

I faced a similar dilemma to Graham last night, and also decided to put out the trap to see if anything had survived the wind and the rain. My session was not as productive, with only 14 moths of nine species attracted. Nevertheless, I did get a new moth for Batch Valley, a Lunar Underwing, and very nice it was too. This is a species first trapped by Graham on 12 September, scroll down or see here, and like several moths, this species has a variety of forms. Last nights was one of the darker forms, as compared to the yellower form trapped by Graham.

Lunar Underwing

The commonest moth in the trap last night was Silver Y. This is an immigrant which appears in varying numbers, though it is usually quite common and apparently this year is a good one for it. The spring immigrants produce a brood, so this moth is in fact likely to be of local origin. In fact, on the same date Graham trapped his first Lunar Underwing, he also discovered a Silver Y pupa. Any well-stocked garden may have Silver Ys nectaring at dusk at the moment, and the metallic Y shaped mark is the distinctive marker on this beautiful moth.

Silver Y

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