As of March 2015, an official website for Surrey Moths has been set-up here. There you'll find information on everything to do with the Surrey Branch of Butterfly Conservation, including the updated events calender for 2015. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Mighty Variety!

I thought I would christen my MV trap in the garden last night, so I trialled it up to 0:00. Quite frankly I was amazed by the results. It was a clear night, and there was a definite chill in the air, yet, in just a couple of hours, I matched what my old trap did in a whole cloudy night. I am not going to use it in the garden again however, till the new year, so this years trapping results are comparable. Within 84 moths of 30 species were 6 new for the year, the best being only my second garden record of Canary-shouldered Thorn, which actually appeared after I had turned the light off!

July 30th, MV up to 0:00:
18 Riband Wave
12 Large Yellow Underwing
7 Shuttle-shaped Dart
6 Dark Arches
5 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing NFY
4 Dunbar
3 Clay
2 Double Square-spot
2 Small Fan-footed Wave NFY
2 Willow Beauty
2 Early Thorn
2 Elephant Hawk NFY
2 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
1 Light Arches
1 V-Pug
1 Peppered Moth
1 July Highflyer
1 Poplar Hawk
1 Iron Prominent
1 Ruby Tiger NFY
1 Yellow-tail
1 Rosy Footman
1 Rustic
1 Fan-foot
1 Single-dotted Wave
1 Scalloped Oak
1 Red Twin-spot Carpet
1 Common Carpet NFY
1 Canary-shouldered Thorn NFY
1 Brimstone

Canary-shouldered Thorn

Thursday, 28 July 2011

July micros

First off, I'd like to thank Sean for keeping this blog alive! For me atleast, July hasn't really lived up to expectations in terms of numbers of moths, but temperatures have been starting to pick up this week, and I've been getting a bit more variety in the garden trap, mostly in the micro category.

I've got quite a bit of catching up to do, but for now here are some of the smaller moths which have been kicking about the garden in recent weeks...

Phyllonorycter comparella, a rare species found only in the vacinity of Poplars, but apparently quite widespread and not uncommon in north Surrey... typical!

Apple Leaf Miner (Lyonetia clerkella)- a very common species in the garden at the moment, with a leaf mine on just about every leaf on our crab apple tree...

Pammene regiana

Phyllonorycter kleemannella

Dichrorampha vancouverana

Coleophora albitarsella- unlike most Coleophora, this moth can be identified without dissection by the white legs and the antennae markings...

Despite being nationally scarce, and declining throughout its range, Recurvaria nanella can be one of the more common Gelechids in the garden trap when its placed near the apple tree...

Carpatolechia decorella

Argyresthia pruniella, I think. Identified from bonnetella by the angle of the stripe against the forewing, according to UKMoths... but I was never very good at Maths (plus I can't find a protractor small enough).

 Recurvaria leucatella

Epinotia ramella

Monopis crocicapitella

Monopis obviella

Agriphila geniculea

Catoptria pinella

Catoptria falsella

No mercury Vapour, but good old trap delivers

Another excellent weather night produced a load of new for the years in the garden. Best however, was the garden tick of a Vapourer. I thought I might get this in the garden at some point, but I expected it to be a fly-by during the day, perhaps whilst holding a vigil at the Buddleia for Humming-bird Hawk (which I have been doing a bit recently, without success so far).

July 27th:
13 Dark Arches
10 Large Yellow Underwing
7 Common Rustic sp.
6 Dunbar
4 Uncertain
4 Shuttle-shaped Dart
3 Heart and Dart
2 Willow Beauty
2 Antler NFY
1 Riband Wave
1 Vapourer NFG
1 Small Rivulet NFY
1 Buff Ermine
1 Rosy Footman NFY
1 Scalloped Oak
1 Light Arches
1 July Highflyer
1 Rosy Minor NFY
1 Rustic
1 Smoky Wainscot
1 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
1 Clay
1 Spectacle NFY
1 Double Square-spot

Rosy Minor


Rosy Footman



Wednesday, 27 July 2011

A Beautiful Range of moths

An impromptu trapping session on the edge of the Pirbright Ranges near West End last night gave me an early oppurtunity to run my new trap. In what was probably the best night of the year in terms of conditions, we ran four traps, and managed a string of quality moths, and great numbers too. The only thing missing was a lifer! Several species were my second ever sightings, but the best was probably several Ling Pugs. This is not a true lifer, as it is considered just a form of Wormwood Pug. We also got several Beautiful Yellow Underwings, which is my first proper sighting (I got a glimpse of one in a trap last year at Dawney's Hill, but it presumably escaped).

26th July, Pirbright Ranges:

Yellow Shell


Small Fan-footed Wave

Pine Hawk

Beautiful Yellow Underwing

Ling Pug

Flame Shoulder

Scarce Footman

True Lover's Knot

Single-dotted Wave

Narrow-winged Pug

Ruby Tiger

Least Yellow Underwing

Slender Brindle

Clouded Border


Common Emerald

Common White Wave


Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing

Common Carpet

Willow Beauty

Striped Wainscot

Sharp-angled Carpet

Scalloped Hook-tip


Plain Wave


Antler Moth

Black Arches

Smoky Wainscot

Riband Wave

Kent Black Arches

Light Emerald

Common Footman

Buff Footman

Cloaked Minor

Small Scallop

Large Yellow Underwing

Rosy Footman

Dark Arches

Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing

Shuttle-shaped Dart

Common Rustic

July Highflyer

Peppered Moth

Mottled Beauty

Least Carpet

Lesser Cream Wave


Dotted Border Wave

Large Emerald

September Thorn

Maiden's Blush


Small Purple-barred

Iron Prominent

Double Kidney

Sharp-angled Peacock

Total: 59

My trap in action

Small Scallop

Small Purple-barred

Sharp-angled Peacock

Sharp-angled Carpet

Ling Pug

Least Carpet

Horse Chestnut (with Clouded Border)

Double Kidney

Beautiful Yellow Underwing (certainly lives up to its name!)

Antler Moth

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

New Trap!

I took delivery of my brand new moth trap today, a 125W MV Robinson! Hopefully it will work with my on-loan generator, and I can use it out and about. Very Exciting!

I will continue to use I current trap in the garden, up to the end of the year at least.

Knot a lot

Conditions were almost perfect last night, and the number of moths in the trap reflected this. However, I am surprised by the lack of variety with just 21 species. These included a third record of True Lover's Knot. I also got a nice Orthopygia glaucinalis

25th July:

13 Dark Arches

10 Dunbar

10 Common Rustic

8 Uncertain

4 Double Square-spot

4 Clay

4 Large Yellow Underwing

4 Rustic

3 Shuttle-shaped Dart

3 Willow Beauty

3 Riband Wave

1 Mottled Beauty

1 Double-striped Pug

1 Common Wave

1 Flame Carpet NFY

1 Scalloped Oak

1 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing

1 True Lover's Knot NFY

1 Light Arches

1 Smoky Wainscot

1 Pale Mottled Willow

Orthopygia glaucinalis

Flame Carpet

True Lover's Knot

Friday, 22 July 2011

Plenty to Drink at Broadstreet / Slender quality in the garden

A couple of nights ago we had a go at mothing at Broadstreet Common near Guildford, but a little rained hindered us. We did manage macro highlights of Kent Black Arches, Small Scallop, and Cream Wave. We also got loads of Drinker including a large female. Among the micros were the grassland specialist Isophrictis striatella, and the boldly marked Pammene aurana.

Shaded Broad-bar

female Drinker

Last night in the garden, it was cloudy, but not really warm. Surprisingly, numbers were my best for three weeks, with 23 species. The only notable was a Slender Brindle.

21st July:
16 Dark Arches
9 Uncertain
6 Dunbar
5 Riband Wave
4 Rustic
4 Double Square-spot
3 Willow Beauty
2 Copper Underwing
2 Heart and Dart
2 Mottled Beauty
2 Dot Moth
2 Common Rustic sp. NFY
1 Yellow Shell
1 Snout
1 Poplar Hawk
1 Clay
1 Shuttle-shaped Dart
1 Slender Brindle NFY
1 Beautiful Hook-tip
1 Bird's Wing
1 July Highflyer
1 Flame

1 Buff Arches


Common Rustic

Slender Brindle

Friday, 15 July 2011

A full moon, which is more than can be said for the trap

It was a warm day yesterday, so I thought it might be worth putting the trap out. Despite several new for the years, it wasn't really, with the lowest numbers for some time, due to a total lack of cloud, and a full moon.

July 14th:
3 Willow Beauty
3 Scalloped Oak
3 Dunbar
2 Uncertain
2 July Highflyer
2 Double Square-spot
1 Copper Underwing NFY
1 Common White Wave
1 Dot Moth
1 Rustic
1 Yellow Shell NFY
1 Early Thorn NFY
1 Clay NFY
1 Scalloped Hook-tip NFY
1 Buff Arches
1 Nut-tree Tussock
1 Yellow-tail NFY
1 Smoky Wainscot NFY


Scalloped Hook-tip


Copper Underwing

Early Thorn

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

A Sprucey bonus

Last night looked quite promising, as a day of temps reaching 23, ended with a little cloud. In the event, the garden trapping was a little disappointing, particularly with overall numbers. At least I got more than the last two nights. Only a few new for the year to shout about, but these included some nice species, including only my third Spruce Carpet.

July 11th:

12 Uncertain

4 Riband Wave

4 Double Square-spot

4 Dark Arches

3 Heart and Dart

3 Rustic

2 Mottled Beauty

2 Buff Ermine

1 Barred Red NFY

1 Scarce Footman NFY

1 Green Pug

1 Light Arches

1 Tawny-barred Angle

1 Ear Moth NFY

1 Beautiful Hook-tip

1 Dunbar

1 Heart and Club

1 Coronet NFY

1 Silver Y NFY

1 Dot Moth

1 Turnip

1 Marbled White Spot

1 Spruce Carpet NFY

and some nice micros.

Common White Plume

Pyrausta aurata


Ear Moth

Scarce Footman

Spruce Carpet

Buff Ermine variation