Monday, 28 July 2014

28th July - I've Got Flowers, And Lots of Hours

After the thunderstorms of Friday afternoon it turned dry again through the weekend, remaining hot though.  Too hot for any serious walking so it was down to the moth trap.  I promised a round up of the latest new and interesting moths that have visited the garden and with the recent thunderstorms and warm weather it has been a good week.  First here are some that I have seen before, but I believe these are slightly better photographs.  First up the Black Arches.

The Small Emerald, a delightful pale green colour with bars of white.

The Spectacle, if you look at the head you can just see the two round markings that give it it's name.

The Iron Prominent, the prominents are members of the Notodontidae family of moths that includes an incredible 3,800 members, the Spectacle above and the Buff Tip, and the Lesser Swallow Prominent, which I have photographed are also from this family.  Typically they are heavy bodies and long winged, the wings being folded back at rest.  many species have a tuft of hair on the trailing edge of the fore wing, which protrudes upwards at rest giving them the name Prominent.  The Iron Prominent is so called due to the rusty specks on the wings

Now for some new moths, first some more from the Notodontidae family.  This is the Pebble Prominent.

A little bit worse for where on the back of the head.

This is a Sallow Kitten, and really beautifully marked moth.

This is a Yellow Tail, named for the yellow marking on the end of the abdomen that you can't see here, however the dark smudge at the top of the wing is another identification mark.

One of the commonest groups of moths around at the moment, and the one most likely to annoy those with open windows on a summer night are the Waves.  This one is the Riband Wave.

Similar to the waves are the carpets, although they are typically more marked and patterned than the waves.  This is the Scorched Carpet so named for the burn marks on the tips of the wings.

The Common Carpet.

The Spruce Carpet.

The Willow Beauty

The Phoenix

The Small Rivulet.

And the Barred Red, which has some very delicate markings on the upper wings

These beautifully marked and shaped moths, are from the Drepanid family and there are 15 species found of these moths in the UK.  They get the name Hook-tip from the distinctive hook shape at the top of the fore wing.  The first, the Scalloped Oak

The Oak Hook-tip

And the Pebble Hook-tip

These next moths are easily over looked, as they are quite small, but are so beautifully marked.  The Marbled Beauty

The Lesser Treble Bar

The Dark Brocade

The Dun-Bar

I am beginning to see greater numbers of the Orange and Yellow Underwings, moths typically associated with autumn.  They are large and quite heavy moths, and are also one of the commonest, being also migratory, they are very much attracted to light, and can turn up in large numbers.  Unfortunately at rest you do not get the chance to see the lovely yellow and orange underwing, this only really shows when they fly.

Usually a dull brown grey, these two do have some beautiful markings on the upper wing, first the Broad bordered Yellow Underwing.

And the Yellow Underwing

This next moth is a quite delicate looking moth from the Geometridae family, which includes the waves and carpets. The Early Thorn, a difficult moth to photograph as it will not stay still

This is the Herald, this is now close to the end of its flying season, and is probably the reason for the washed out appearance.

When I go to the moth trap in the morning, I am always hoping to find one of the spectacular large moths, the ones I have just posted here are beautiful in their own right with intricate detail, subtle colours, and amazing shapes.  But the there is just something about the large moths.  Maybe its because you never see them during the day, but in most cases they are just big and colourful.  There have been the usual hawk-moths this week, Elephants, and Poplars, but this one was a new one, the Garden Tiger.  Not an uncommon moth, but definitely a spectacular looking moth.

The fascination continues with these amazing insects, always something new to find, or hope for.

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