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

Tuesday, 24 May 2022

Catch report - 22/05/22 - back garden

Another really good night on Sunday here in Fordham.
A very surprising 55 species were recorded to the trap, staying up late until nearly 1am and then up at 4:30, I was a little tired come Monday morning to say the least.
Worth it? Hell yes!
Some super species turned up, namely Bordered White, Small Clouded Brindle, Sandy Carpet and Narycia duplicella. 
Narycia duplicella is a fairly scarce species here in Cambridgeshire, recorded only in 2 tetrads. This is probably due to the moth not coming to light very often (I concur, i've only taken 2 to light and one found during the day since 2006).
It was great to alo get not one, but two Sandy Carpet, including a really nicely marked one.

Things have now gone a little quieter and the trap will be off for a few nights as temperatures dip to below 8 degrees.

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 247 species

22/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Bordered White 1 [NFG]
Large Yellow Underwing 2 [NFY]
Maiden's Blush 1 [NFY]
Sandy Carpet 2 [NFG]
Small Clouded Brindle 1 [NFG]
Straw Dot 1 [NFY]
Alder Moth 2
Bright-line Brown-eye 1
Brimstone Moth 1
Buff-tip 1
Cabbage Moth 1
Cinnabar 1
Common Pug 2
Common Swift 3
Coronet 1
Elephant Hawk-moth 1
Flame Shoulder 2
Garden Carpet 1
Grey-pine Carpet 1
Grey Dagger sp
Iron Prominent 2
Large Nutmeg 1
Light Brocade 1
Light Emerald 3
Marbled Minor sp 14
Miller 1
Mottled Pug 1
Pale Mottled Willow 1
Pale Tussock 1
Peppered Moth 1
Setaceous Hebrew Character 2
Shuttle-shaped Dart 3
Snout 2
Sycamore 1
Treble Lines 2
Turnip Moth 1
Vine's Rustic 2
White Ermine 5
Willow Beauty 1

Micro Moths

Argyresthia cuppresella 1 [NFG]
Blastodacna hellerella 1 [NFG]
Eudonia mercurella 1 [NFY]
Narycia duplicella 1 NFG
Aphomia sociella 1
Anania hortulata 1
Cameraria ohridella 1
Crambus lathoniellus 2
Dichrorampha sp 2
Epinotia immundana 1
Hedya pruniana 1
Epiphyas postvittana 8
Evergestis forficalis 1
Notocelia trimaculana 1
Plutella xylostella 1
Ptherochroa rugosana 1

Blastodacna hellerella

Bordered White

Eudonia mercurella

Large Yellow Underwing

Narycia duplicella

Sandy Carpet

Small Clouded Brindle


Straw Dot



Monday, 23 May 2022

Elephants in pink pyjamas

The Elephant Hawk-moths have now arrived here in my Fordham trap, with two beautifully fresh examples turning up on Saturday night, this is the third species of Hawk-moth so far this year (After Lime & Poplar). 
A cooler night on Saturday with clearing skies and a dip to 9c affected numbers slightly, but to still be adding new species for the year on a nightly basis is extremely satisfying.
I have now taken to driving the previous nights moths the other side of the local woods and then pop them in the hedgerows there, thus they are then far enough away to not be disturbed and they don't get eaten by the local wild aviary!
Birds... lovely to see (I'm not use to so many, as my previous garden in Stevenage was lousy with cats, I lost count on how many Tinkerbells and Mitten's that came into our garden), but the negative is that they've found my moth platter!

Highlights for me (Elephants aside) were two good micro species, firstly Grapholita lobarzewskii was new for the garden, a lovely golden colour and easily seperable from janthinana on this ground-colour alone. 
The second interesting micro, was a Coleophora, which seemed similar or the same as the one that I found in my Cydia zebeana lure on Thursday. Coleophora violacea is the favourite currently. Both retained to be inspected further (I've now had a 2nd to the lure today, putting to bed the fluke theory that was going through my head).

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 237 species

21/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Elephant Hawk-moth 2 [NFG]
Mottled Rustic 1 [NFG]
Buff-tip 1
Common Swift 3
Green Carpet 2
Iron Prominent 5
Large Nutmeg 2
Light Brocade 1
Pale Tussock 5
Rustic Shoulder-knot 2
Treble Lines 5
Shuttle-shaped Dart 1
White Ermine 3
Willow Beauty 1
Yellow-barred Brindle 5
 
Micro Moths
 
Coleophora sp pos violacea 1 [NFG]
Grapholita lobarzewskii 1 [NFG] 
Homoeosoma sinuella 1 [NFG]
Epiphyas postvittana 2
Platyedra subcinerea 2
Plutella xylostella 2

Elephant Hawk-moth

Coleophora sp pos violacea

Grapholita lobarzewskii

Homoeosoma sinuella

Mottled Rustic


A new moth for me!

It's amazing, that even after 17 years i'm still adding species to my 'all-time moth list'.

I had never seen either of the Psychoides species of moth (poor effort I know), until today
 
Whilst weeding the Garden of Rest next to the Thirst Youth Bar in Bishop's Stortford today, I was bending down turning over the soil and noticed a tiny black moth sitting on a leaf of Green Alkanet (Not it's foodplant, I did not notice any Hart's-Tongue Fern in the garden.).
 
Quickly potted it was a new one for me, Psychoides verhuella (seperated from filicivora by the lack of dorsal white spot, and spotting on the apex). 
I never can stress enough how important it is to have a pot on you at all times!
 
23/05/22 - Newtown Road - Bishop's Stortford 

Psychoides verhuella


 
 

Sunday, 22 May 2022

A brief local wander on Saturday

Yesterday (21/05/22) I had a spare hour to have a walk with a net to see what I could find in the local area. 
The aim of the game was to tap bushes and net moths as they fly out. A rewarding but sometimes frustrating method of field craft for moths.
And indeed it worked beautifully, plenty of moths netted including Anthophila fabriciana, many Dichrorampha species, Celypha lacunana, Hedya pruniana (Only from the Prunus) and the best until last, at least 5 Adela croesella, what a stunning little moth with it's purple shades. A single smart Clepsis consimilana and the best, a beauty of a micro, Telechrysis tripuncta.
 
Telechrysis tripuncta is a moth I first encountered whilst on holiday and when visiting the gardens of heligan, I then found it in north Herts at a chalk pit, this being only my 3rd record, and not seen in Cambs for 10 years?
Very pleased and very lucky.
 
Adela croesella

Clepsis consimilana

Telechrysis tripuncta

 

Catch report - 20/05/22 - back garden

Another effort on Friday night, again it was just warm enough for a bit more moth activity. Numbers dipped once more as we have lost the humidity.
When it's less humid and cooler, the micros always take a hit, Friday night was no exception!

Two species were added to the garden list, both Geometrids. The beautiful vibrant green, Green Pug and the delicate Small Dusty Wave.

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 232 species

20/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Green Pug 1 [NFG]
Small Dusty Wave 1 [NFY]
Alder Moth 3
Buff-tip 1
Common Swift 2
Garden Caarpet 1
Heart & Dart 1
Large Nutmeg 2
Marbled Minor sp 4
Muslin Moth 1
Pale Tussock 2
Shuttle-shaped Dart 1
Vine's Rustic 1
Willow Beauty 3
Yellow-barred Brindle 3
 
Micro Moths
 
Epiphyas postvittana 4
Plutella xylostella 1 
 
Green Pug

Small Dusty Wave

 

Cavenham Heath - Field Trip - 19/05/22

I paid a visit to Cavenham Heath in neighbouring Suffolk last Thursday night, a really special looking site that I hope to continue to record moths at throughout the year.
Being so close to Suffolk here in East Camns, it is extremely convenient to find sites across both counties (A bit like when I lived in East Herts and West Essex).
We arrived at around 7:30pm and I did some sweeping first turning up a few species around the Gorse, namely Common Heath, Cydia ulicetana, Neofaculta ericetella and a few of the Carpet species.
 
Afterwards we proceeded to setup 3 traps, one in the Birch woodland and two overlooking the open areas of heathland.
It was warm and almost muggy an hour before lights on, but then the sky cleared and you could see your breath only half hour after dark! A cool and dewy one by the end at midnight.
Luckily there were still some beautiful moths to enjoy, namely the big furry Fox Moth, the exotic looking Cream-spot Tiger and the bright Clouded Buff.
Micro moths were few and far between but Carpatolechia proximella and Glyphipterix forsterella were the best from the night.
 
It's always worth the effort getting out and lugging the traps around and you feel some sort of sense of achievement in doing so.
If you've never explored the woods, grasslands, marshes, coastal sand dunes local to you, then why not give it a go? Even if you haven't got any suitable equipment, there is sure to be someone local to you who shares the same passion, the passion of moths.

19/05/22 - Chippenham Fen - East Cambridgeshire - 3 traps, 250w Clear Mercury Robinson Trap, 160w MBT Trap and Actinic Trap

Macro Moths

Brown Silver-line
Buff Ermine
Clouded Buff
Common Marbled Carpet
Common White Wave
Common Wainscot
Cream-spot Tiger
Flame Shoulder
Fox Moth
Green Carpet
Iron Prominent
Light Brocade
Light Emerald
Lime Hawk-moth
Marbled White-spot
Marbled Minor sp
Mottled Rustic
Narrow-winged Pug
Orange Footman
Pale Tussock
Pale Oak Beauty
Peach Blossom
Peppered Moth
Peacock Moth
Pebble Hook-tip
Setaceous Hebrew Character
Shears
Shoulder-striped Wainscot
Spectacle
Swallow Prominent
Straw Dot
Tawny-barred Angle
Treble Lines
Yellow Belle


Micro Moths

Adela reamurella
Agapeta hamana
Ancylis mitterbacheriana
Anthophila fabriciana
Bryotropha terrella
Carpatolechia proximella
Celypha lacunana
Cochylis nana
Coleophora sp TBC
Cydia ulicetana
Eulia ministrana
Neofaculta ericetella
Nemapogon cloacella
Orthotaenia undulana
Phylloporia bistrigella
Plutella xylostella
Scoparia ambigualis
Scrobipalpa ocellatella
Teleiopsis diffinis
Tinea trinotella

Ancylis mitterbacheriana

Bryotropha terrella

Carpatolechia proximella

Clouded Buff

Coleophora sp TBC

Common Heath

Cream-spot Tiger

Fox Moth

Glyphipterix forsterella

Grey Pug

Orthotaenia undulana

 

Saturday, 21 May 2022

And an improvement once more!

Another good night on Thursday night.
I went out on a field trip to Cavenham Heath, at dusk it was warm and calm, but an hour in the sky had cleared completely and the temperature feel down to high single figures (Very typical for thin soil environs and where it is very open and flat).
We packed up at midnight and my car read 9 degrees, just a short 15 odd minute drive back home, I pulled up on the drive and it was 14 degrees!! Also I could see a moth in my headlights on the wall, it was to be my first Large Tabby for the garden, result!
 
Things got better when I went in the garden, and potted several super species, namely Netted Pug, Cinnabar and Toadflax Pug. 
Micros were well represented owing to the warmer temperature in the village, with a really fresh Ephestia, Sitochroa verticalis and the best moth of the night, a tentative Pammene herrichiana.

Pammene herrichiana is an odd one because only us Brits consider it a seperate species to fasciana. The moth is in the good hands of Colin Plant, and hopefully he will get to the bottom of it. It does look odd though!

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 230 species

19/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Cinnabar 1 [NFG]
Clouded-bordered Brindle 1 [NFG]
Netted Pug 1 [NFG]
Toadflax Pug 1 [NFY]
Alder Moth 1
Coxcomb Prominent 1
Chinese Character 1
Chocolate-tip 1
Common Carpet 1
Common Marbled Carpet 4
Common Pug 5
Common Swift 4
Common Wainscot 6
Coronet 4
Flame Shoulder 2
Garden Carpet 2
Green Carpet 3
Grey Dagger sp 1
Heart & Dart 1
Large Nutmeg 3
Light Brocade 2
Marbled Minor sp 8
Mottled Pug 7
Muslin Moth 2
Pale Tussock 8
Peppered Moth 1
Rustic Shoulder-knot 1
Spruce Carpet 1
Treble Lines 7
Turnip Moth 1
Vine's Rustic 5
Yellow-barred Brindle 10
Willow Beauty 4
White Ermine 5

 
Micro Moths
 

Aglossa pinguinalis 1 [NFG]
Crambus lathoniellus 1 [NFG]
Dichrorampha alpinana flavidorsana 1 [NFG]
Ephestia sp 1 [NFG]
Notocelia trimaculana 1 [NFY]
Pammene herrichiana pos 1 [NFG]
Sitochroa verticalis 1 [NFG]
Bryotropha affinis 2
Cochylis atricapitana 1
Epiphyas postvittana 7
Evergestis forficalis3
Plutella xylostella 2
Scrobipalpa ocellatella 1

Aglossa pinguinalis

Cinnabar

Clouded-bordered Brindle

Dichrorampha alpinana flavidorsana

Ephestia sp

Netted Pug

Pammene herrichiana pos

Sitochroa verticalis

Toadflax Pug

 

 


A brief post from the 18th of May

I trapped once again on Wednesday night, and with a cooler night than of late, moths were few and far between.
It was nice to get a second (fresher) Plutella porrectella of the year and the best moth was a White-spotted Pug, a new one for the garden.
Spruce Carpet was a returner from last year.
 
Light Brocade are peaking now here, with 10 showing up.

It's good to sometimes get quieter nights inbetween the busy nights, as it allows me to catch up a bit!

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 219 species

18/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Spruce Carpet 1 [NFY]
White-spotted Pug 1 [NFG]
Green Carpet 3
Heart & Dart 1
Large Nutmeg 3
Light Brocade 10 
Nut-tree Tussock 1
Pale Oak Beauty 1
Pale Tussock 8
Treble Lines 8
Turnip Moth 2
White Ermine 5
Willow Beauty 2
 
Micro Moths
 
Bryotropha affinis 5
Cameraria ohridella 2
Hofmannophila pseudospretella 1
Evergestis forficalis 2
Notocelia cynosbatella 1
Plutella porrectella 1
Plutella xylostella 3
Scrobipalpa ocellatella 2
 
Plutella porrectella

White-spotted Pug

 

Best night of the year so far

Unbelievable sums up Tuesday night, with a low of around 14 degrees, calm and cloudy and with an essence of humidity, it was a busy night at the trap.
A huge 18 species were added to the year and garden list, and some real corker species to boot.
 
Highlights for me were Dog's Tooth (last seen in 2016), Figure of Eighty,  Bucculatrix cristatella (A new species for me), Caloptilia honoratella (Trapped before at nearby Chippenham Fen, but great to get it on the garden list, I will get it dissected but i'm 99.8% sure it's right) and Elachista poae (Another one that needs full confirmation, again i'm confident it is this species having seen it before).

All in all what a night! And there was plenty more to come after that.

I need a personal assistant currently to keep up with posting, so they will be more brief from now on (And subsequently less boring!).

Moth garden list for 2022 stands at 217 species

17/05/22 - Back Garden - Fordham - East Cambridgeshire - Actinic Trap
 
Macro Moths
 
Clouded Silver 1 [NFG]
Coxcomb Prominent 1 [NFG]
Dog's Tooth 1 [NFG]
Figure of Eighty 1 [NFG]
Flame 1 [NFG]
Large Nutmeg 2 [NFG]
Purple Bar 1 [NFG]
Snout 1 [NFY]
Alder Moth 1
Brindled Pug 1
Brimstone Moth 1
Buttoned Snout 1
Chinese Character 3
Chocolate-tip 1
Common Carpet 2
Common Marbled Carpet 3
Common Pug 3
Common Swift 8
Common Wainscot 1
Coronet 5
Flame Shoulder 1
Garden Carpet 1
Green Carpet 3
Grey Dagger sp 1
Grey-pine Carpet 1
Heart & Dart 1
Light Brocade 2
Marbled Minor sp 10
Mottled Pug 2
Muslin Moth 1
Oak-tree Pug 1
Orange Footman 1
Pale Mottled Willow 1
Pale Tussock 4
Peppered Moth 1
Poplar Grey 1
Ruby Tiger 1
Rustic Shoulder-knot 2
Spruce Carpet 1
Treble Lines 3
Turnip Moth 4
Vine's Rustic 2
Willow Beauty 5
White Ermine 1
Yellow-barred Brindle 12

Micro Moths

Anania hortulata 1 [NFG]
Bucculatrix cristatella 1 [NFG]
Caloptilia honoratella 1 [NFG]
Celypha lacunana 1 [NFY]
Dichrorampha plumbagana 1 [NFG]
Elachista poae pos 1 [NFG]
Etainia decentella 2 [NFY]
Hedya nubiferana 1 [NFY]
Scoparia ambigualis 1 [NFG]
Syndemis musculana 1 [NFG]
Alucita hexadactyla 1
Bryotropha affinis 10
Bucculatrix bechensteinella 2
Bucculatrix nigricomella 8
Cydia sp 1 (TBC)
Epiphyas postvittana 10
Evergestis forficalis 1
Platyedra subcinera 15
Plutella xylostella 2
Scrobipalpa ocellatella 1
Tinea trinotella 1
 
Anania hortulata

Bucculatrix cristatella

Caloptilia honoratella

Clouded Silver

Coxcomb Prominent

Dichrorampha plumbagana

Dog's Tooth

Elachista poae pos

Etainia decentella

Large Nutmeg

Snout