A diary of my mothing activity covering highlights and photos from my moth trapping activities. Mainly Norfolk (UK), occasionally beyond. I may mention other wildlife sightings here, especially insects, but for birds see my birding diary.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Holt Country Park mothing

July kicked off with the Currant Clearwing lure followed by the Yellow-legged Clearwing lure both attracting their respective targets.  The latter also attracted a Syrphus hoverfly but it escaped before I could tell if it was torvus or vitripennis.  I also found a Common Cloaked Shoot Gypsonoma dealbana in the house.

Currant Clearwing, North Elmham, 1st July

Yellow-legged Clearwing, North Elmham, 1st July

That evening it was the Norfolk Moth Survey event at Holt Country Park and it was a great success.  I don't know what number the final tally for the evening came to but counting just the moths I saw myself we reached a very impressive 170 species.  I suppose the best of those was Norfolk's second Orange-headed Tubic Agnoea josephinae.

Orange-headed Tubic Agnoea josephinae (male, gen det), Holt, 1st July

The only other totally new moth for me was a macro, albeit one that could be overlooked as a micro.  We didn't, but we did almost overlook it as a Pinion-streaked Snout.  I did raise the possibility of it being worn Marsh Oblique-barred but someone thought we were out of range for that species known mainly from the Broads in Norfolk.  Well fortunately I retained it to check and lo and behold it was a Marsh Oblique-barred.  Not quite restricted to the Broads as there are a handful of records from west Norfolk and a very few from north Norfolk though none very recently - including one from Holt Lowes area in 1973.

Marsh Oblique-barred (male, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Other highlights included at least 7 Grass Emeralds, a species I'd only seen one of previously.

Grass Emeralds, Holt, 1st July

The other macros that I considered to be most worthy were July Belle, 2 Pretty Chalk Carpets, Dingy Shell, 2 Kent Black Arches, True Lover's Knot, Purple Clay, Grey Arches, Miller, Small Dotted Buff and Oak Nycteoline.  Although we tentatively identified the Purple Clay in the field we weren't sure so I retained it to check - in daylight the next day it seemed much more straightforward.

Purple Clay, Holt, 1st July

Pretty Chalk Carpet, Holt, 1st July

Among the micros there were quite a few Small Crests Anarsia spartiella (I put down 8 but suspect a careful count would have come up with a much higher number) - a good showing for a moth I'd only seen once before.

I didn't recall having seen Heather Neb Aristotelia ericinella before but it turns out I had done, albeit back in 2011.  Still, a very smart moth and one of the highlights of the evening for me.  My photos don't really do it justice - imagine the whitish bars being bright and sparkling and you'll be nearer the mark.

Heather Neb Aristotelia ericinella, Holt, 1st July

Another one that I thought was a lifer but had forgotten I'd seen it once before was the Golden Pearl Anania verbascalis.

Golden Pearl Anania verbascalis, Holt, 1st July

I managed to mess up the ID of at least two Nemapogon, although to be fair to myself I wasn't sure about either, hence taking them home to check.  The first looked very dark on the night prompting me to think that it might be a worn koenigi but it didn't look so impressive when I got it home and was in fact just a Cork Moth Nemapogon cloacella.  Although it was darker than most Cork Moths I should have noticed the big white spot in the discal area which have been much smaller on koenigi  The second I did think was probably Cork Moth Nemapogon cloacella but in fact it turned out to be better, Gold-sheen Clothes Moth Nemapogon ruricolella.  Although I had found the last Norfolk record of this species in 2013 it had slipped off my radar, although I must have realised there was something funny about it or else I wouldn't have brought it home to check.

Cork Moth Nemapogon cloacella (female, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Gold-sheen Clothes Moth Nemapogon ruricolella (male, gen det), Holt, 1st July

The other micros I saw were (and as always the numbers are lower than reality - just as many I could be sure I could remember seeing when I got home): Bordered Carl Coptotriche marginea, Large Clothes Moth Morophaga choragella, another Cork Moth Nemapogon cloacella, a Parornix sp. which I stuffed up the dissection for, Red Birch Midget Phyllonorycter ulmifoliella, Gold-ribbon Argent Argyresthia brockeella, 2 Golden Argents Argyresthia goedartella, Netted Argent Argyresthia retinella, 15 Bird-cherry Ermines Yponomeuta evonymella, 2 Diamond-back Moths Plutella xylostella, Tipped Oak Case-bearer Coleophora flavipennella, Forest Case-bearer Coleophora ibipennella, 3 Grey Rush Case-bearers Coleophora glaucicolella, 4 New Tawny Tubics Batia lunaris, 4 Golden-brown Tubics Crassa unitella, Long-horned Flat-body Carcina quercana, Crescent Groundling Teleiodes luculella, Birch Sober Anacampsis blattariella, Gorse Crest Brachmia blandella, 2 London Dowds Blastobasis lacticolella, 4 Pine Cosmets Batrachedra pinicolella, Buff Cosmet Mompha ochraceella, 3 Hawthorn Cosmets Blastodacna hellerella, 4 Water-mint Conches Phalonidia manniana, 2 Knapweed Conches Agapeta zoegana, 3 Barred Fruit-tree Tortrixes Pandemis cerasana, Privet Tortrix Clepsis consimilana, 2 Orange Pine Tortrixes Lozotaeniodes formosana, Brown-barred Tortrix Epagoge grotiana, 2 Red-barred Tortrixes Ditula angustiorana, 2 White-barred Tortrixes Olindia schumacherana, 4 Flax Tortrixes Cnephasia asseclana, 4 Yellow Oak Buttons Aleimma loeflingiana, Green Oak Tortrix Tortrix viridana, Rusty Birch Button Acleris notana, Common Marble Celypha lacunana, 2 Pine Marbles Piniphila bifasciana, 2 Marbled Orchard Tortrixes Hedya nubiferana, Buff-tipped Marble Hedya ochroleucana, White-shouldered Marble Apotomis turbidana, 2 Bramble Shoot Moths Notocelia uddmanniana, White-foot Bell Epiblema foenella, Hoary Bell Eucosma cana, Bud Moth Spilonota ocellana, 2 Orange-spotted Shoots Rhyacionia pinicolana, Large Beech Piercer Cydia fagiglandana, Bulrush Veneer Calamotropha paludella, 20 Garden Grass-veneers Chrysoteuchia culmella, Grass-veneer Crambus pascuella, 2 Marsh Grass-veneers Crambus uliginosellus, Pearl Grass-veneer Catoptria pinella, 3 Water Veneers Acentria ephemerella, 7 Common Greys Scoparia ambigualis, Little Grey Eudonia lacustrata, Brown China-mark Elophila nymphaeata, 2 Ringed China-marks Parapoynx stratiotata, 4 Small Magpies Anania hortulata, Long-winged Pearl Anania lancealis, Fenland Pearl Anania perlucidalis, 3 Olive Pearls Udea olivalis, 2 Mother of Pearls Pleuroptya ruralis, Double-striped Tabby Hypsopygia glaucinalis, Rosy Tabby Endotricha flammealis, 8 Heather Knot-horns Pempelia palumbella, Dotted Oak Knot-horn Phycita roborella, Ash-bark Knot-horn Euzophera pinguis, 2 Twin-barred Knot-horns Homoeosoma sinuella, White Plume Pterophorus pentadactyla and Common Plume Emmelina monodactyla.

Forest Case-bearer Coleophora ibipennella (male, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Birch Sober Anacampsis blattariella (female, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Other macros were 3 Leopard Moths, 4 Drinkers, Pebble Hook-tip, Peach Blossom, 3 Buff Arches, Large Emerald, 2 Common Emeralds, Blood-vein, Lesser Cream Wave, Small Fan-footed Wave, 2 Single-dotted Waves, Treble Brown Spot, 3 Riband Waves, 3 Large Twin-spot Carpets, Phoenix, Barred Yellow, 2 Grey Pine Carpets, Broken-barred Carpet, 2 July Highflyers, Sharp-angled Carpet, Small Rivulet, Sandy Carpet, Lime-speck Pug, Wormwood Pug, Currant Pug, 4 Narrow-winged Pugs, 3 V-Pugs, 2 Green Pugs, 3 Double-striped Pugs, 3 Small Yellow Waves, 5 Clouded Borders, 2 Tawny-barred Angles, Scorched Wing, 2 Brimstone Moths, Lilac Beauty, 2 Swallow-tailed Moths, 2 Peppered Moths, Willow Beauty, 4 Mottled Beauties, 2 Engraileds, 2 Bordered Whites, 4 Common White Waves, 4 Clouded Silvers, 3 Light Emeralds, 6 Barred Reds, Pine Hawk-moth, Lime Hawk-moth, Poplar Hawk-moth, Elephant Hawk-moth, Pale Prominent, 2 Yellow-tails, 6 Rosy Footmen, Dingy Footman, Scarce Footman, 2 Buff Footmen, 4 Common Footmen, Buff Ermine, 2 Ruby Tigers, Short-cloaked Moth, 2 Flame Shoulders, 2 Large Yellow Underwings, 3 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwings, 2 Double Square-spots, 2 Clays, Smoky Wainscot, Poplar Grey, Dark Dagger, Small Angle Shades, Dingy Shears, Dun-bar, 2 Dark Arches, Light Arches, 2 Marbled Minors, Rufous Minor, Tawny Marbled Minor, 3 Uncertains, 4 Marbled White Spots, 2 Silver Ys, 3 Plain Golden Ys, Spectacle, 2 Beautiful Hook-tips, 2 Straw Dots, 2 Snouts, Fan-foot and Small Fan-foot.

Dark Dagger (female, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Rufous Minor (female, gen det), Holt, 1st July

Of course it wasn't just moths and among the non-lepidopteran highlights was this Great Crested Newt that walked past my sheet.  Sadly it was a bit camera-shy and sloped off into the undergrowth before I could manage a better photo.

Great Crested Newt, Holt, 1st July

I didn't do as much as I would have liked with the lacewings or caddisflies as I wouldn't have been able to keep up with the moths but I couldn't help noticing this lovely beast of a lacewing.  I thought it had to be something new, and in a way it was since I haven't seen one since I've been "doing" lacewings, but it turns out I photographed one a few years ago so it's not quite my first.  Anyway, it was good to see, an uncommon Lacewing that isn't recorded very frequently in Norfolk, the Black Lacewing Nothochrysa capitata.  The whitish lump towards the rear of the abdomen is apparently spermatophore which is passed from the male to the female - you can see this on several photos of this species on the internet.

Black Lacewing Nothochrysa capita, Holt, 1st July

Another beast of an insect was this big Dusky Longhorn Beetle Arhopalus rusticus, a first for me.

Dusky Longhorn Beetle Arhopalus rusticus, Holt, 1st July

According to the Hoverflies book entirely black hairs along the margins of tergites 3 and 4 should have made this hoverfly one of the Eupeodes species, but I couldn't find one like it and it showed the bulge on the head above its antennae that typifies the genus Scaeva.  I believe it is Scaeva selentica, the first time I've identified this species.

Scaeva selentica, Holt, 1st July

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