Wednesday, 20 July 2011


Members of the Essex Moth Group made their annual visit to the country park on Tuesday 19th.
Five traps were set up near the car park with two of them continuing till dawn by which time the final tally was about 50 macro moths. This figure is down by 25 species on last year's tally, no doubt due to the cool and clear night.

Members had already gone home and missed seeing this spectacular garden tiger moth which arrived at the trap between 1am and 4am. This species has been recorded at each meeting of the Moth Group here at the park over the last four years but has always waited till everybody has gone home!
Numbers of garden tiger moths have drecreased in recent years in the many parts of the UK.

The nationally scarce saltmarsh loving ground lackey moth provided some interest. One or two are normally seen in the trap here each summer.

The big drinker moths are turning up at the traps at the moment and will continue to be regular visitors for the next 2 or 3 weeks. Bigger in size were three oak eggars that came to some of the traps.

This small emerald pictured above also turned up at last year's moth group session here and was the only record last summer.

The bulrush wainscot is reasonably widespread across the county near marshes and the coast and as the name suggests, has reedmace (bulrush) as the larval foodplant. It has been recorded here before but only in small numbers.

Some of the other moths noted were pine hawkmoth, oak hook-tip, chinese character, riband wave, maidens blush, least carpet, yellow-barred brindle, lime-speck pug, small dusty wave, swallowtailed, willow beauty, scalloped oak, latticed heath, early thorn, peppered, ruby tiger, buff ermine, brown-tail, common footman, scarce footman, dingy footman, coxcomb prominent, shuttle shaped dart, large yellow-underwing, lesser-yellow underwing, broad-bordered yellow-underwing, lesser broad-bordered yellow-underwing, dusky sallow, lunar-spotted pinion, dun-bar, brown-line bright-eye, bright-line brown-eye, dark arches, light arches, poplar grey, lesser common rustic, uncertain, white-point, clay, smoky wainscot, snout, flame shoulder and shaded broad bar. There was also the nice sight of the great silver water beetle at one of the traps.

Earlier in the day 2 yellow wagtails flew over calling, a whimbrel was heard out on the mudflats and the regular nightingale was calling again from the car park up until dusk.
The previous day there was a steady flow of swifts across the island all morning with at least 300 making their way westwards.

Andy Field visited Langenhoe Ranges with Richard Hull on the 20th and noted 6 greenshank, 40 green sandpipers, 250 black-tailed godwits, 100 bar-tailed godwits, 130 avocets, little ringed plover, peregrine and 2 sandwich terns. Recently there has been a good count of 100 little terns on the shingle point of Langenhoe.


Mel Lloyd said...

Never seen the sumptuous garden tiger (or a ground lackey for that matter). Isn't it glamorous and stylish to arrive late to a party? Nice pics thanks.

Dougal Urquhart said...

It's great to know this great moth is still present - even if you do have to get up at 4am to see it!
- Dougal

Ryan Ritchie said...

Seen a garden tiger moth the other day sitting on the floor about 1ish so I took a picture off it not knowing what it was cause it looked cool and I'm quite interested by moths

Dougal Urquhart said...

Thanks for sharing your sighting -they're a great moth to find.