Wednesday, 21 May 2014

"Life is like a box of chocolates"

"You're never sure what your gonna get" in the immortal words of Forrest Gump. A bit like moth trapping really except the box is a Skinner trap and the chocolates are the moths.
So it was on the night of the 19th, when I surfaced to sift through the trap I very nearly overlooked the moth pictured above as a Light Emerald but it didn't look quite right and I vaguely remembered that there was a form of Barred Red that was in fact green. A quick look in Lewington confirmed my suspicions that this was a Barred Red of the form prasinaria. I am not entirely sure of the status of this form in Sussex but at best I would think it is scarce, in any event it was a new one for me and a nice surprise.
This usurped my moth of the month so far which was a Great Prominent (a garden second) that I trapped on the night of the 17th. This moth really is extremely beautiful on close inspection with its mixture of greens and browns as well as being of impressive size!
Other macro newbies for the year were Garden Carpet, Light Emerald, Common Swift, and Pale Tussock on the night of the 17th, Foxglove Pug and Uncertain on the night of the 19th, and Setaceous Hebrew Character, Treble Lines,and Puss Moth on the night of the 20th.
In addition I am starting to get to grips with micro's thanks to the excellent Micro Moths of Great Britain & Ireland.
Thanks to this (and some assistance from PC) I am now sifting through a variety of common micro's that I have previously largely ignored as not enough time or too problematic! New species for the garden (overlooked on numerous occasions) included Cydia pomonella (Codling moth) pictured above, Evergestis forficalis (Garden Pebble), Eudonea angustea, Aphomia sociella (Bee moth), and Endrosis sarcitrella (White-shouldered House-moth) also pictured which I am pretty sure I have not overlooked as it is particularly distinctive
Birding has been very quiet apart from the resident breeders with a singing Willow Warbler at Rickney on Saturday morning and the female Marsh Harrier which continues to loaf around being the best of a quiet period. In fact spring in general has been not the greatest, with waders especially down on past years. On the dragon front "Old red eyes is back" with my first Red-eyed Damsel of the year at Hankham on the 17th.

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