Thursday, 31 May 2012

Lots of new species

Very busy at the moth trap over the last few days. Not great numbers but a pile of new species for me - about 20 over the last week. Here are some of the prettier ones (i.e. the ones that didn't escape before I could photograph them):

Orange Footman

Ingrailed Clay

Common Wainscot
Red Green Carpet

Buff Ermine

Muslin Moth (female)


Small Angle Shades
Beautiful Demoiselle (Calopteryx virgo)
Nicrophorous humator?

Calopteryx pop art

 The female Muslin is the first that I have seen. As only the males fly by night, I don't catch females. This one was hiding under some mint in the garden. Interesting mating strategy if the two sexes are active at different times of day!

The beetle is, I think, Nicrophorous humator, a Sexton Beetle. I am catching lots of these at the moment and they are generally covered in mites, smelly and boisterous. If it is that species, they feed on carrion which they bury to feed their larvae - nice. Also catching a lot of Cockchafer (do you think that the man who named Cockchafer was looking for a suitable name and decided to put one in his pants for inspiration?? I can only imagine that they do chafe!)

Finally, the Calopteryx is important. It is one of two species in SX54 that has not been recorded since the millenium. In three years, I have not see one there (although much of the square is sea and there is little suitable habitat) and can't believe that I have missed it before. The last pic shows one of my little gripes with the FZ150 - it is very slow to save photos and I often end up switching the camera off before it has saved. Normally this leads to a file error but this time I must have timed it just right as it was saving to generate some pop art.


  1. I saw 2 demoiselles at Wembury back in August 2007, in my note book I have just recorded them as demoiselles as my non-bird nature knowledge was limited back then. I saw them from the bridge over the stream in the valley to the beach.I have not seen them since and I guess they were beautiful due to the nature of the stream there. I don't think the grid reference for this area is SX54 though but thought you might like to know of my historical sighting.

  2. Thanks for that. I am pretty sure that they were not around in previous years as I have searched quite hard for them. SX54 is a reference to the 10 km square so the grid ref will be SX5xx4xx (I make that bridge about SX518487).