As of March 2015, an official website for Surrey Moths has been set-up here. There you'll find information on everything to do with the Surrey Branch of Butterfly Conservation, including the updated events calender for 2015. Hope to see you there!

Saturday, 31 March 2012

A Lunar eclipse...

We're obviously past the peak emergence of Small Quaker, so catch numbers are likely to reasonably low for a little while now. Well, until the Brindled Pugs peak! A decent variety last night though, in what was forecast as the last of the hot days (for a while). I got a few year ticks, including a reasonble scarcity in my garden, a Lunar Marbled Brown.
3oth Mar:
25 Small Quaker
10 Common Quaker
4 Hebrew Character
4 Brindled Pug
3 Clouded Drab
3 Twin-spot Quaker
1 Oak Beauty
1 Early Grey
1 Double-striped Pug NFY
1 Early Thorn NFY
1 Lunar Marbled Brown NFY
Lunar Marbled Brown
Not at all related to last nights trapping, but I took a walk on a heathland near me yesterday, in the hope of getting my first good view of an Orange Underwing. After a bit of frustration, one came low enough to net. I'm glad I have added it to my moth photography list (despite it not being a particularly good shot)!
Orange Underwing

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Dead Horny

I could have trapped on any of the last few warm nights, but I decided instead to give the moths a chance to hatch. I trapped last night, but actually got a lot less than five days ago for some reason. Only one moth was of note, my second ever Yellow Horned. Unfortunately, it was found deceased near the trap, for no obvious reason.
28th Mar:
55 Small Quaker
8 Common Quaker
8 Brindled Pug
3 Hebrew Character
3 Clouded Drab
1 Chestnut
1 Yellow Horned NFY
You do wonder why this moth got this name. Okay, its got yellow antennae, but could they really be described as horns? Well, back in the day when these things were being named, having a dead moth to study was the done thing, so I suppose this would be the standard appearance of this species:
Yellow Horned

Monday, 26 March 2012

Moths Abound

As with everyone else, I have been getting lots of Small Quaker, interspersed with all the other moths you would expect to be seeing at this time of year:  Common Quaker, Twin-Spotted Quaker, Chestnuts and Dotted Chestnuts, Hebrew Character, Yellow Horned, March Moth etc etc.  

A few highlights were the nights I got five or six Oak Beauty...that's quite an impressive sight!  A few Early Thorn have arrived and also an early Purple Thorn - usually out around April/May.  A Red-Green carpet has also put in an appearance.

Oak Beauty
Early Thorn

Purple Thorn

My partner has spent the last few days here on Wimbledon Common looking for the day-flying Orange and Light Orange Underwing.  The former have been quite abundant around Birch, although flying too high too net.  But a lot of hours spent lurking around a small stand of Aspen finally paid off and he was, through binoculars, able to identify a male Light Orange Underwing by its characteristic comb-toothed antennae when it landed low down in the tree....although unfortunately not low enough to net.  This was reported to our County Recorder, Graham Collins, and he has today confirmed that he will accept this record by virtue of the characteristic antennae.   This is believed to be a first for Wimbledon Common.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Small Dusty Wave- 21st March

Thanks to Nick Tanner for the sighting and photo of what is surely the earliest recorded Small Dusty Wave this year, if not the earliest Surrey record, taken at Berrylands Station on 21st March.

For more moth sightings from Berrylands and the surrounding area, visit Nick's blog.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

The moths are Blossoming!

A night which was completely clear, didn't promise much, but the day had been warm, so I thought it was worth trying. Boy was it, as I got a total of 200 Small Quaker (with my previous trap, the most individuals of all species I got in one night was 107)! I also got a brand new species. I actually counted 199 Small Quaker, but I made a point of searching all the surfaces outside, in order to get that 200th, which I managed! The new one was a lovely Blossom Underwing.
24th Mar:
200 Small Quaker
9 Common Quaker
4 Hebrew Character
3 Clouded Drab
3 Twin-spot Quaker
2 Brindled Pug NFY
2 Early Grey NFY
1 Dotted Border
1 Red Chestnut
1 Chestnut
1 Blossom Underwing NFM
1 Oak Beauty
Brindled Pug
Early Grey
Blossom Underwing

Monday, 19 March 2012


So far this March, numbers have been relatively low compared to those experienced last month, in February. I did catch this Muslin Moth back on the 13th March, a first for the garden, and certainly the earliest record of this species I've ever heard of, unless anyone can beat it?

Dark Chestnut is also a new one to appear in 2012, with this individual being the 3rd record for the garden since the first turned up on the 25th February of this year...

Double-striped Pug...

Saturday, 10 March 2012

The red twins....

A decent night for weather, and the trap was reasonably busy with 25 moths. I had a couple of Chestnut which gave me the first oppurtunity to use this very good article ( ), unfortunately, despite a promising initial look, they were both normal Chestnut (I've still not seen Dark). Best things in the trap was only my second Red Chestnut, and a year-tick of some Twin-spot Quaker.
9th March:
12 Small Quaker
5 Common Quaker
3 Twin-spot Quaker NFY
2 Chestnut
1 Small Brindled Beauty
1 Clouded Drab
1 Red Chestnut NFY
Small Brindled Beauty
Twin-spot Quaker
Red Chestnut

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Another good night.....

11 Small Quaker
5 Small Brindled Beauty
2 Hebrew Character
2 Spring Usher
1 Pale Brindled Beauty
1 March
1 Dotted Chestnut
and new to me:  1Yellow Horned

The yellow horns of the Yellow Horned