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13 August 2019

13 August 2019 – A Palette of Browns

(Agriphila tristella)

There were possibly two hundred moths in the last trap but the number of different species was limited.  20 or so Mother of Pearl (Pleuroptya ruralis) moths most of which were released into the bushes as soon as possible to prevent the less boisterous moths from being disturbed; then an army of Underwings crouching like missiles in the peaks of the egg-boxes were persuaded to find shelter in the shrubs; Dunbar, Common Rustic, Dark Arches, Silver Y, Willow Beauty, Poplar Hawk-moth were all housed in a spacious mesh cage to await release later that evening and that left a handsome Gold Spot and Agriphila tristella. 

A ‘mournful lover of the field’ is a reasonable translation of the scientific name from the heavy sombre shading on the forewing.  The moth is common throughout the county and will take flight if disturbed during the day from the shelter of Wavy Hair-grass or meadow grass on waste ground.

No new species of moth has been recorded now for nearly two months.  Overall the numbers are down and for this the weather must carry some responsibility.  A trap will be set tonight as the forecast is rain-free.