Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Mothing inland

Green-brindled Crescent. This one lacked the 'green' sheen.

The beauty of running an inland MV trap, at times of migrant activity, is that you are just as likely to trap a few good moths as a worker would at a coastal site. The MV trap by the sea might get higher numbers and more species, but us 'inlanders' need not be totally gripped.

The current wave of good moths that have been recorded along the south coast has found its way into Surrey and the London area, with Vestals, Four-spotted Footmen, Scarce Bordered Straws and Palpita vitrealis all being recorded. It's the birding equivalent of getting back garden Wrynecks and Yellow-browed Warblers! So far this week I have managed a Vestal, a Dark-sword Grass and a noctuella - my expectations for tonight are thus heightened.

Sometimes 'inland' can top trump the coast. Back in June 1996 I was staggered to find SIX Bordered Straws in the garden trap, a migrant species that I had not recorded before until then. If I had such numbers then surely, my reasoning went, my Dungeness friends would have had hundreds. So I phoned one of them - Barry Banson - and asked him how many he had recorded. None was the answer. And neither had Dave Walker at the bird observatory...

This morning revealed no migrants, but there was the fourth garden record of White-point, and the commoner, but still welcome, Green-brindled Crescent.

White-point. All my four garden records have come this year.


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