Wednesday, 6 December 2017

The back garden moths of 2017

Yes, it's that time again, a look back at the natural history highlights of the past year - a Godsend to the frequent blogger who may just be running out of things to bore you all rigid with.

It has undoubtably been a good year for moths - at least for the back garden, which after 30 years of recording still manages to surprise and entertain. I continued to try and get to grips with the micros, with some success, including a couple of 'good for Surrey' species:

Phtheochroa sodaliana, feeds on Buckthorn, local on Surrey chalky soils
Blastobasis rebeli, an adventive species and the second Surrey record

New macro additions included these most welcome visitors:

Clifton Nonpareil, part of a nationwide surge in records
Scallop Shell, is there a more finely marked moth out there?
Scarlet Tiger - still very scarce in the county and a big surprise during a hot spell in mid-June
Yellow-legged Clearwing - along with Orange-tailed, enticed to a pheromone lure
Us inland recorders were also blessed with good numbers of scarce migrants, including a handful of Scarce Bordered Straw. I was also able to record my first Bordered Straw since 1996, a Hummingbird Hawk-moth and the garden's first Delicate (below). I was pleased to welcome back single Privet Hawk-moth and Garden Tiger, both absent for a number of years. The garden total now stands at 563 species (400 of which are macros).

4 comments:

Simon Douglas Thompson said...

The scallop shell is so stunning!

Steve Gale said...

A favourite of mine Simon, and a moth that I rarely see

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Great detail and a very pleasing variety of moths. I plan to set up black lights and a sheet next year so maybe I can replicate some of your success here.

Steve Gale said...

Good luck with that David!