Welcome

Hello and welcome to my moth Blog. I now reside in a small village in East Cambridgeshire called Fordham. My Blog's aim is to promote and encourage others to participate in the wonderful hobby that is Moth-trapping.
Moth records are vital for building a picture of our ecosystem around us, as they really are the bottom of the food chain. They are an excellent early indicator of how healthy a habitat is. I openly encourage people to share their findings via social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.
So why do we do it? well for some people it is to get an insight into the world of Moths, for others it is to build a list of species much like 'Twitching' in the Bird world. The reason I do it....you just never know what you might find when you open up that trap! I hope to show what different species inhabit Cambridgeshire and neighbouring counties.
On this Blog you will find up-to-date records and pictures.
I run a trap regularly in my garden and also enjoy doing field trips to various localities over several different counties.
Please also check out the links in the sidebar to the right for other people's Blogs and informative Websites.
Thanks for looking and happy Mothing!

KEY

NFY = New Species For The Year
NFG = New Species For The Garden
NEW! = New Species For My Records

Any Species highlighted in RED signifies a totally new species for my records.

If you have any questions or enquiries then please feel free to email me
Contact Email : bensale@rocketmail.com

My Latest Notables and Rarities

Monday 27 May 2024

Still a pretty good night despite awful temperatures

It felt cold and damp in my garden once more this morning, though upon returning from a field trip at half midnight, I checked the trapping area, and was pleasantly surprised to note nearly 30 species.

By the morning a further 11 were added, making a rather respectable 41 species, low numbers for most species though.

Interestingly there were no new macro moth species for the year list, but there were 4 new micros which was pleasing, including a rather smart Dioryctria abietella.

Feeling it today after another late night and early rise!

Looking on the horizon for a nice warm night, looks like i'll be looking a little longer...

Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 235 species
 
26/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Angle Shades 1
Brimstone Moth 1
Cabbage Moth 1
Common Pug 1
Common Swift 7
Common Wainscot 1
Flame 1
Flame Shoulder 1
Freyer's Pug 1
Garden Carpet 1
Green Carpet 2
Green Pug 3
Heart & Dart 1
Light Emerald 1
Marbled Minor 5
Pale Oak Beauty 2
Pale Tussock 2
Peppered Moth 1
Poplar Grey 1
Setaceous Hebrew Character 1
Shears 1
Shuttle-shaped Dart 1
Silver Y 1
Treble Lines 2
Turnip 1
Vine's Rustic 1
White Ermine 2
White-point 1
Willow Beauty 2
Yellow-barred Brindle 1


Micro Moths

Bryotropha terrella 1 [NFY]
Celypha lacunana 1 [NFY]
Dioryctria abietella 1 [NFY]
Notocelia trimaculana 1 [NFY]
Aphomia sociella 2
Argyresthia cupressella 1
Crambus lathoniellus 2
Epiphyas postvittana 1
Eudonia angustea 1
Hedya pruniana 2
Tinea trinotella 1

Bryotropha terrella

Celypha lacunana

Dioryctria abietella

Notocelia trimaculana

 

Sunday 26 May 2024

A better night but a real mixed one

The night started clear and breezy, but at some point I knew it would cloud over and rain was expected.
I'm not sure when this happened, because at nigh on midnight, it was still a clear sky, and very little was flying to the trap.
The temperature stayed just into double figures at 10.8c, not spectacular to say the least.
 
By morning and at 5am I was sifting and sorting through the trap and looking around all of the fence panels and house wall, it had already rained at some point and as I was finishing up, the heavens opened again.
I jotted down a fair list considering there was barely anything for 3hrs after dark.
 
3 macro moths were new for the year and later on this morning, a micro moth was spotted by my son on the wall (One that I had missed) whoch turned out to be a welcome year first Eudonia lacustrata.
 
Best moth of the night was a nice fresh Brown Rustic, not a common moth here, and my latest Tawny Pinion (of the Autumn brood) was noteworthy.

Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 231 species
 
25/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Brown Rustic 1 [NFY]
Common Marbled Carpet 1 [NFY]
Pale Oak Beauty 1 [NFY]
Cabbage Moth 1
Common Swift 6
Dark Spectacle 1
Flame Shoulder 1
Foxglove Pug 1
Garden Carpet 1
Green Pug 2
Heart & Dart 2
Large Nutmeg 2
Light Brocade 3
Marbled Minor 2
Pale Tussock 1
Peppered Moth 1
Setaceous Hebrew Character 1
Shuttle-shaped Dart 1
Small Square-spot 1
Tawny Pinion 1
Treble Lines 3
Turnip 2
Willow Beauty 3


Micro Moths

Eudonia lacustrata 1 [NFY]
Argyresthia cupressella 1
Epiphyas postvittana 1
Eudonia angustea 1
Grapholita funebrana 1
Plutella xylostella 1
Phyllonorycter leucographella 1

Brown Rustic

Common Marbled Carpet

Eudonia lacustrata

Pale Oak Beauty

Tawny Pinion

 

Saturday 25 May 2024

Just too cold at night

Still very cool at nights here in my garden of late, dropping to 9 or 10c and very damp early morning, the moths haven't been great, with just 25 of 15 species this morning with no newbies, but doing the rounds on my lure bucket traps did reveal a teeny tiny Pammene albuginana in the FUN. 

Thursdays catch was even worse with 14 species, and no new macro species. Luckily there were 3 new micros for the year that saved it.

The Coleophora was retained. The markings, size and flightimes look good for either alticolella/glaucicolella and new for the garden.

When will these nights warm up?


Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 227 species
 
23/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Common Swift 4
Garden Carpet 1
Green Carpet 1
Green Pug 2
Heart & Dart 1
Marbled Minor 5
Turnip Moth 1
White Ermine 1
Willow Beauty 4
Yellow-barred Brindle 1


Micro Moths

Coleophora alticolella/glaucicolella 1 [NFG] (TBC)
Hedya nubiferana 1 [NFY]
Scrobipalpa acuminatella 1 [NFY]
Epiphyas postvittana 3

24/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire

Pammene albuginana 1 [NFY] (To FUN Lure at night)

Coleophora alticolella/glaucicolella

Hedya nubiferana

Scrobipalpa acuminatella

Pammene albuginana

 

Friday 24 May 2024

Chippenham Fen - Field Trip - 13/05/24

A belated report from Chippenham Fen back on the 13th of May, where it had been a lovely warm day and with cloud cover rolling in at dusk it looked to be pretty perfect.
All perfect apart from the breeze, and the so-called cloud cover not materialising until I got home after midnight! I could see the cloud in the distance, but it was slowly moving NE from the West.
 
There were still plenty of moths to be observed though, and some great early records of the fens speciality species, all 3 (Silver-barred, Flame Wainscot & Reed Leopard) were present in reasonable numbers already.
A Grey Birch was also nice to see, an uncommon moth, particularly on garden lists.

A very smart Thyraylia nana was certainly the most colourful, with it's spectrums of blue and yellow.

A pair of Small Clouded Brindle showed a bit of variation in colouration, and a moth I dont see much around here (although it use to be common for me in Hertfordshire) Tachystola acroxantha.
 
A smart Olindia schumacherana was also potted up. This is a scarce species in Cambridgeshire, and seems to have a stronghold around this area.

A Niditinea species has been retained for dissection.

All in all, not a bad session but numbers were struggling and species were a bit lower than expected.

13/05/24 - Chippenham Fen - East Cambridgeshire - 1x 125w Trap, 1x 160w MBT Trap, 1x 250w Robinson Trap & 1x Actinic Trap


Macro Moths

Alder Moth
Brimstone Moth
Common Carpet
Common Pug
Common Swift
Common Marbled Carpet
Common Wave
Coronet
Cream Wave
Flame Shoulder
Flame Wainscot
Green Carpet
Grey Birch
Light Emerald
Lime-speck Pug
Marbled Minor
Oak-tree Pug
Orange Footman
Pale Oak Beauty
Pale Prominent
Pebble Hook-tip
Pretty Chalk Carpet
Purple Bar
Reed Leopard
Red-green Carpet
Ruby Tiger
Scorched Carpet
Silver-barred
Silver-ground Carpet
Small Clouded Brindle
Small Phoenix
Straw Dot
Tawny Marbled Minor
Waved Umber
White Ermine
White Pinion-spotted
Willow Beauty



Micro Moths

Adaina microdactyla
Agonopterix ocellana
Anania hortulata
Argyresthia spinosella
Aspilapteryx tringipennella
Bactra lancealana
Cataclysta lemnata
Crambus lathoniellus
Cochylis atricapitana
Elachista humilis
Epinotia immundana
Evergestis forficalis
Eudonia angustea
Eulia ministrana
Glyphipterix thrasonella
Monopis weaverella
Niditinea sp
Notocelia trimaculana
Olindia schumacherana
Parornix sp
Scoparia ambigualis
Scrobipalpa ocellatella
Tachystola acroxantha
Thyraylia nana

125w MV Robinson Trap on the edge of the fen

Elachista humilis

Eulia ministrana

Flame Wainscot

Grey Birch

Niditinea sp

Olindia schumacherana

Pebble Hook-tip

Small Clouded Brindles

The stunning Thyraylia nana

 

Thursday 23 May 2024

Cream-spot Tiger, yippee!

After one taken in the village a mere 500 metres away to good friend Leslie's actinic trap the other night, I couldn't believe it when I saw one sitting on top of the trap before turning in for the night at 10pm.
At the time I was tired, and presumed it was probably the same moth.
 
Roll on this morning and a quick photo revealed that it wasn't the same moth! Arctiidae, particularly Garden & Cream-spot have quite unique patterned forewings, no two are exactly the same.
 
Blown away beyond belief, it is a great addition to Scarlet and Jersey Tiger which are already on the garden list, I will now pray for Garden Tiger now (Although I did find a caterpillar in the garden last year). 
 
It was slim pickings under clear skies once more, but I did add 3 other species to the year list and there was also a tiny moth in the FUN bucket trap, which turned out to be a Grapholita jathinana, a new record to that lure for me.

Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 223 species
 
22/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Common Wave 1 [NFY]
Cream-spot Tiger 1 [NFG]
Green Pug 1 [NFY]
Common Swift 3
Garden Carpet 1
Heart & Dart 1
Marbled Minor 1
Pale Tussock 1
Rustic Shoulder-knot 1
Shears 1
Snout 1
Turnip Moth 1
White Ermine 1
Willow Beauty 1


Micro Moths

Aproaerema anthyllidella 2 [NFY]
Grapholita janthinana 1 [NFY] (To FUN lure)
Agonopterix arenella 1
Anania hortulata 1
Epiphyas postvittana 2
Plutella xylostella 3

Cream-spot Tiger Comparison

Aproaerema anthyllidella

Common Wave

Cream-spot Tiger

Grapholita janthinana

Green Pug

 

Wednesday 22 May 2024

Another new for garden! Don't laugh....

Honestly, a common moth and it's taken nigh on 3 years to record one in my garden.
 
I'm talking about the Silver-ground Carpet, a common moth locally in good habitat. I'm not sure why it's taken so long to add it to the list, nevertheless it was a bit of a faded specimen sadly.
 
It was another similar sized catch to the previous night (Sunday) but which more variety with 5 new moths, sadly, not many micros on these cool, clear and damp evenings.
 
Highlights for me aside from the new record were the vibrant Cinnabar, and a very smart and fresh Cabbage Moth with the red highlights still present behind the head.

And then the rain came, all 31 days worth? probably...
 
Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 218 species
 
20/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Cinnabar 1 [NFY]
Freyer's Pug 1 [NFY]
Silver-ground Carpet 1 [NFY]
Small Square-spot 1 [NFY]
Buff-tip 3
Cabbage Moth 1
Common Pug 1
Common Swift 7
Coronet 1
Flame Shoulder 1
Garden Carpet
Green Carpet 1
Heart & Dart 1
Light Brocade 5
Marbled Minor 5
Mottled Pug 1
Peppered Moth 1
Poplar Hawk-moth 1
Rustic Shoulder-knot 1
Shuttle-shaped Dart 4
Spruce Carpet 1
Treble Lines 5
Turnip Moth 3
White Ermine 1
Willow Beauty 4


Micro Moths

Ditula angustiorana 1 [NFY]
Epiphyas postvittana 2
Hedya pruniana 1

Cabbage Moth

Cinnabar

Ditula angustiorana

Freyer's Pug

Silver-ground Carpet

Small Square-spot

 

The usual fare & two brown jobs new for year

A rather average catch on Sunday night, which has allowed me to catch up a bit (And also what with the god awful weather we have had this past 24hrs).

20 species is about average for the time of year for my garden, rising to around double that in just two weeks time normally, we'll see!
 
Best moths were two new for year species, the migrant Rush Veneer (Nomophila noctuella) & two Ringed China-marks (Parapoynx stratiotata) the former uncommon here, in fact I dipped on this species last year, but the latter species is very common here, usually numbering in the 50's for the year.

Photos were challenging to say the least, in the bright sunshine and brisk breeze.
 
Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 213 species
 
19/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Buff-tip 2
Common Swift 5
Figure of Eighty 1
Garden Carpet 2
Light Brocade 3
Marbled Minor 3
Pale Mottled Willow 1
Rustic Shoulder-knot 2
Shuttle-shaped Dart 4
Silver Y 3
Snout 1
Spectacle 1
Swallow Prominent 1
Treble Lines 4
Turnip Moth 4
Vine's Rustic 1
White Ermine 2


Micro Moths

Nomophila noctuella 1 [NFY]
Parapoynx stratiotata 2 [NFY]
Epiphyas postvittana 1

Nomophila noctuella

Parapoynx stratiotata

 

Tuesday 21 May 2024

Double post of year-listers

Things have got away from me a bit, it's been hard to keep up with listing all the moths once more, so here are two back-to-back catches from Friday and Saturday night with just nthe new species listed. 
 
Both were warmish nights but breezy and with clearing skies once more, things haven't really settled down just yet.
 
Friday night saw 6 newbies added to the running tally, and Saturday night yielded a further 4 year ticks.
 
Best moths included a mint Shears (not a commn moth in my garden) a Dark Spectacle, and amongst several Silver Y and Plutella xylostella on Saturday night was a White-point.

Not bad at all, but generally species and numbers did drop over the weekend due to the overnight conditions, and micros have been virtually non-existent.
 
Rain rain and more rain now, so I and the moths deserve a night off.
 
Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 211 species
 
17/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Flame 1 [NFY]
Large Nutmeg 1 [NFY]
Large Yellow Underwing 1 [NFY]
Shears 1 [NFY]

Micro Moths  

Crambus lathoniellus 1 [NFY]
Dichrorampha simpliciana 1 [NFY]


18/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths 

Dark Spectacle 1 [NFY]
Setaceous Hebrew Character 1 [NFY]
Treble-bar 1 [NFY]
White-point [NFY]
 
Crambus lathoniellus

Dichrorampha simpliciana

Flame

Foxglove Pug

Large Nutmeg

Large Yellow Underwing

Shears

Dark Spectacle

Treble-bar

White-point

 
 

Monday 20 May 2024

Clear and moon-lit

A very average catch on Thursday night, there weren't many moths at all.
 
But a poorer night than of late was made up by recording a new garden moth, and a macro moth at that (which are getting harder to add now)
The May Highflyer isn't a common moth, morelike frequent, but commonly distributed throughout most of the British Isles.
It is the 810th species to be recorded in my garden since August 27th 2021. 

I also got a year first Common Wainscot, which was very lively!

Things must pick up again soon, but we need cloudy and warm nights.
 
Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 201 species
 
16/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Common Wainscot 1 [NFY]
May Highflyer 1 [NFG]
Angle Shades 1
Buff-tip 2
Common Pug 1
Common Swift 4
Coronet 1
Nutmeg 1
Poplar Kitten 1
Shuttle-shaped Dart 3
Rustic Shoulder-knot 1
Silver Y 2
Treble Lines 5
Turnip Moth 5
Willow Beauty 6


Micro Moths

Epiphyas postvittana 2
Plutella xylostella 1
Scrobipalpa ocellatella 2

Common Wainscot

May Highflyer

 

Sunday 19 May 2024

Another great set of moths

Temperatures are still struggling at night here, averaging around 11c as the minimum and with mainly clear skies, it's still not quite happening with numbers.
 
Thankfully the moths have thought that they don't have a choice, and they must fly to find a mate and so new species are continuing to arrive here which is very pleasing in itself.
Two new macro moths were the stunning Alder Moth and the first of many Heart & Darts.
 
Before lights on, and as it was fairly calm and sunny I did a spot of netting. 8 species were netted in half an hour, and there were some goodies to be had.
A second suspected Pammene herrichiana, year first Bryotropha affinis (after netting 10's of basaltinella) and a garden first Lampronia morosa (with really odd pale markings on it)
I also netted a tiny Elachista which will need dissecting, one of about 3 possible with a transversal band, with it being worn on the edge, there's no hope of identification from just a photo.

All in all a cracking good night.
 
Moth garden list for 2024 stands at 199 species
 
15/05/24 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Alder Moth 1 [NFY]
Heart & Dart 1 [NFY]
Brindled Beauty 1
Buff-tip 1
Chinese Character 1
Common Pug 1
Common Swift 2
Coronet 1
Flame Carpet 1
Garden Carpet 1
Light Brocade 1
Lime-speck Pug 1
Marbled Minor 5
Nutmeg 1
Oak-tree Pug 1
Orange Footman 2
Pale Tussock 1
Poplar Hawk-moth 1
Ruby Tiger 2
Seraphim 1
Shuttle-shaped Dart 7
Spectacle 1
Spruce Carpet 1
Treble Lines 5
Turnip Moth 1
Waved Umber 1
White Ermine 1
Willow Beauty 2


Micro Moths

Anania hortulata 1 [NFY]
Aphomia sociella 1 [NFY]
Bryotropha affinis 1 [NFY] (netted)
Carcina quercana 1 [NFY]
Coleophora alcyonipennella/frischella 1 [NFY]
Lampronia morosa 1 [NFG] (netted)
Nemapogon cloacella 1 [NFY] (netted)
Anthophila fabriciana 1 (netted)
Bryotropha basaltinella 2
Cochylis atricapitana 1
Dichrorampha plumbagana 2 (netted)
Elachista sp 1 (netted)
Epiphyas postvittana 4
Eudonia angustea 2
Evergestis forficalis 1
Pammene herrachiana 1 (netted)
Phyllonorycter leucographella 1 (netted)
Plutella xylostella 2
Scrobipalpa ocellatella 2

Alder Moth

Anania hortulata

Aphomia sociella

Bryotropha affinis

Carcina quercana

Coleophora alcyonipennella/frischella

Elachista sp TBC

Heart & Dart

Lampronia morosa

Pammene herrichiana?

Seraphim