Saturday, 31 July 2010

Holiday Home wanted

Im off to Turkey next week and could do with a home for my Fox moth cats and a few pupa which will be emerging soon ...any takers...

Friday, 30 July 2010

A Night of Mothing in Wakefield anyone??

Hi All,

I work at a place called the ABLE project in Wakefield, it is a 34 acre site comprising mainly of rough grassland with lots of thistle, nettle and bramble but also fringed by the river Calder and with various species of trees with some hawthorn hedgerow. We also have an allotment and orchard, to our east there is the Yorkshire water treatment works and a housing estate beyond that.

The bio diversity on site is incredible with 20 species of butterfly identified last year, numerous species of Mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects and birds also on site.

I'm hoping some of you maybe intrested in coming along one night to set up your moth traps and help us get a better picture of which moths use the area. We have power to the compound but to get good coverage any of you with a generator would be fanatstic.

If you are interested I'm sure food and hot drinks could be provided in return for your help.

Please either leave a comment or you can contact me either by emailing or by ringing the site 01924339994.

I look forward to hearing from you and thanks for reading this far.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Butterfly count Northowram

Usual walk today produced---
3 Green veined white
10 Small White
4 Small Heath
8 Small Copper
2 Peacock
30 Small tortoieshell
60+ Meadow brown
50 Gatekeeper
3 Comma
1 Small Skipper.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Old Lady On the Canal

Difficult times on the Rochdale Canal as I struggle around with a broken foot. Trying to do some gigs but in pain and frustrated.
Anyway…. As I hobbled my way to bed on Monday night, I was suddenly disorientated by what I first thought was a bird in the confined hall just outside the boat’s toilet. After the flapping had stopped I was stood looking at a very large moth on the tiled wall. None other than 2300 Old Lady Mormo Maura. Easily identified even though I have never seen her before. I have never had a Macro moth on my boat and now this. Pic and wing detail shown here. Not such a drab species as is often described. Winston

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Heath Royd last couple of nights

A few new ones for me over the weekend given that it's my first year with a trap! Several nights produced amongst the more common;

33 Scalloped Oaks
12 Dun-bars
1 Phoenix
1 Burnished Brass
1 True Lovers Knot
3 Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
1 Early Thorn
2 Copper Underwings
1 V-Pug
1 Grey Chi
7 Mother of Pearl
1 Dark Spectacle

Several of the above chilling in the fridge waiting for photo shoot! Told off by her indoors for filling one shelf with moths so had a clear out tonight! Have what looks like a Small Quaker in the fridge but it was a bit lively earlier so couldn't get a decent shot. Is it a bit late or would it simply be part of a second batch?


Cromwell Bottom Sat night....

Runnibg two light traps at Cromwell bottom on Sat Night meet about 9.30.near where the bird watching platform is going(?).All welcome............

Dark Green Fritillary(Only House wood Northowram)

Today about 2.30 I noticed a large orange butterfly feeding on thistle heads about 20 feet from where i was stood ,unfortunatly there was a large barrbed wire fence between me and the butterfly,as luck would have it, the strong wind was bowing my way the butterfly was heading straight for me as it took off.I netted it with one swoop I could see the large orange butterfly was a beautiful male Dark green fritillary(seen many times before in Cornwall)curved lower wing eliminating Comma.bad luck again with the barrbed wire as the net was stuck and the fritillary was escaping and I could not get it free. I watched it fly off about 30 feet away and despite looking for at least an hour it was not seen again.Also seen :-
Comma 7
Gatekeeper 28 (a pair in cop pic above)
Meadow Brown 40+
Small copper 3
Small Heath 2
Small skipper 6
Small White 5
Small Tortoiseshell 3
Speckled Wood 1

Monday, 26 July 2010

Keep and eye out..

White Letter hairstreak at Manor Heath
I thought that one of the Calderdale team may be interested in the finding of one of the above in my garden last week feeding on Angelica flowers. I’m 95.5% certain of its ID and after checking its host realised it was elm! There is a wych elm growing in next doors garden, so I wondered if any body would be interested in determining if any eggs have been deposited on this tree. Is the white letter hairstreak common in Calderdale?

2 Heath Avenue
Manor Heath
Thanks for the info Lawrance

Cromwell Bottom (lunch time stroll)

Had a quick look round tag Loop this lunch time which was quite produtive in light drizzle.
Shaded broad Bar x 15
Yellow Shell x 2
Common Carpet x 1
Latticed Heath x 3
Common wave x 3
Clouded Border x1
Small fan - Footed Wave x 1
Udea Lutealis x 2
Gatekeeper 50 +
Meadow Brown 20 +
Small Skipper 5
Large Skipper 2
Speckled Wood 2
Large white 1

Clay Triple-lines 23 07 10

Hi all,walking through some Beech woodland near Stoodley Glen,i flushed a brownish carpet type moth which landed on a beech trunk,i got a good look at it,but made the mistake of trying to get a pic on the tree where settled !! and youve guessed it off it went !! thinking of seeing if can get a light in the area hopefully one night.not sure if it was 1st/2nd generation,though it looked quite nicely marked.Bri.

Confused 22 07 10

Had a try with actinic at Langfield Edge on a cloudy but cooler night only saw 2 moths,at first thought this was a dusky brocade obscura form,but after checking the underside of forewing which shows 2 faint bands on confused and 1 on dusky brocade,i sent pic off to Charley Fletcher,coincidently he saw 3 confused the night before,which were exactly like this 1,and reckons this is indeed a Confused,which is the 1st ive seen,probably they are being under recorded no doubt !

Friday, 23 July 2010

Dark Green Frit update

I keep working on Brian re going on line but I dont think it will happen any time soon.
I'll ask him about photos when I see him or get time to ring.
Great Blog by the way.

the site for DGF at Withens Clough was: park at res. Walk up the tarmaced lane which doubles back on the road up from the bottom. Brian showed us the spot which was about half way up to the trees.
Marsh thistles are the common upland thistle, on tall stems, sometimes up to 6ft. Purpley-pink, occasionally white flowers. Can imagine butterflies would feed from any thistle, though. (just 3 common ones - marsh, creeping and spear- )
Same with violets, for the cats to feed on. Many bogs have a little marsh violet in them - I've seen it at Dean Head (Scammonden) and top end of Stoodley Glen recently, though I've never seen the flowers.
Dog violet is only in and around gardens as far as I know, in Calderdale.
Good Luck! Steve

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Common or dingy Footman..???

Be good year for Common footman in Northowram but this one stood out in the crowd of Commons,any body got any ideas.???

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Pug Help

Pug from pellon 4th July.??
Below is an excellent guide to pugs of Lancashire,and very useful for calderdale species.

Feeding on next door's nettles

Anyone ID this please?

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Burnet Species

I noticed a few of these up on Soil Hill in the last 3 weeks, today I got lucky.

Monday, 19 July 2010

Another Oak Eggar

Cold Edge Dams around 1235hrs.

Anomalous update,18 07 10

Hi all,14 3 10 i planted up 2 large plant pots with a clump of wavy hairgrass in each and covered both with very fine mesh,after methodically checking for any other larva/predators in the grass/soil below.18 3 10, 6 brown form larva and 5 green form were collected from Jailhole by me/Andy,size range was 10/13mm,and placed in pots seperated by colour.both pots being kept outdoors at meadows edge garden checking at night they were feeding ok.on 03 04 10, pot A, 4 out of the 5 green form had turned brown ! pot B, 4 out of the 6 seen were the same brown colour.on 23 04 10,pot A,1 green larva still feeding at about 26mm,pot B,1 brown larva restless,indicating probably close to going underground to pupate,as hopefully all the others had ! it will be interesting to see which sex comes out of which pot.heres pic of pupa and cocoon,which was a fragile case of soil 15mm long opened up,pupa 1cm long,i cm below ground aprox,checked on 19 06 10.all the best Baffled/Bewildered Bri.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

And here are a few toxic beauties..

Footage from Cromwell Bottom - 30th June.

Knottwood,17 07 10

Some good local species last night,scallop shell 1,suspected 4,also large emerald 11,green arches 2,common lutestring 1 mel,purple clay 58,engrailed 24,light emerald 28,northern spinach 14,dark arches 22,large yellow undrwings 8,brimstone 7,common white wave 16,common wave 2,riband wave 4,fan foot 1,clay 1,green carpet 11,burnished brass 1,pebble hook tip 1,ghost 1 f,carcina quercana 1,mottled beauty 23,plain golden y 1,beautiful golden y 2,smoky wainscot 2,common rustic agg 2,common footman 4,clouded border 7,july highflier 7,v pug 2,yellow shell 2,argyresthia brockeela 1,dotted clay 3,purple bar 2,lesser swallow prominent 3,early thorn 2nd gen 1,coxcomb prominent 1,bird cherry ermine 5,common marbled carpet 1,clouded bordered brindle 2,dunbar 2,straw dot 2,narrow winged pug 1,large fruit tortrix 2.suspected pic .regards Bri.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Common Blues 17 07 10

5 common blue butterflies today at meadows edge garden,birds foot trefoil having bing planted up in this garden to specifically atract this species,1 female seen 2009.and i noticed a female egglaying and found a few eggs laid singly on the upper surface of b f trefoil leaves today.also 2 common hawker dragonflies freshly emerged with larval skins in the largest pond.

Big Butterfly count

Foodplant questions?

Would I be correct about the vetch that the Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnets were feeding on down Cromwell Bottoms being primarily Tufted Vetch, V. cracca?
And were the yellow flowers favoured by some specimens, Meadow Vetchling, Lathyrus pratensis, or Birdsfoot Trefoil, Lotus corniculatus?
The shots I have of the moths on yellow flowers, unfortunaely do not show the leaves of the plant for an easy i.d.

Barred Red, a new moth for us!

Dark Spectacle?
Swallow or Lesser Swallow?

Barred Red

Friday, 16 July 2010

Knott Wood tonight

meeting at 10ish tonight...bring a brolly...If any one has any pics of Burnished brass from Calderdale over the last 10 years could they send them to me or post them on the blogg...many thanks

Fox Moth Update

The top picture is of the cat shedding old skin,which can be seen discarded on the right in the second picture.Third pic of 1st instar cat about 34mm and growing well and feeding on heather and bramble.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Food For Fritz

This is the Dog Violet, larval food plant of Dark Green Fritillaries to look out for. Flowers from April to July, so I'm surprised I didn't notice any at Sheddon.

Burnished Brass (update)

Stenochrysis ' Cryptic Brass '
Intermediate (needs gen det to determin species)

Chrysitis 'Burnished Brass'

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Ghost Dance
Just finished the Ghost Moth video. I'll probably re-work this at a later date. It was quite a challenge and could do with some additional material, but this will suffice for the time-being. Follow the link. Enjoy.

Dark green fritillary and a hummingbird hawkmoth

Brian Cain saw the butterfly in Withens Clough on Sat. 10th July. It was flight-worn and probably a female, feeding from thistle flowers.

He says he has had, at a guess, 5 sightings over 20 years in Calderdale. He's not on the internet, and hasn't been so active in recent years due to ill health, but remains recorder with Halifax Scientific Society.

The hummingbird hawkmoth was feeding from jasmine in a garden in Hebden Bridge on Sunday 11th. Reported by Kerry McQuade and Helen Blackwell.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Marvellous Micro

Good numbers of these 1073 olethreutes schulziana about on Whiteholme Drain,well, before this monsoon came in !! saw 7 in a small area.

Burnished Brass Pellon / Halifax

Northowram this year
Manor Heath this year

Burnished Brass last night.

Burnished Brass 2004 Pellon. Are these both races and are they being split.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Beautiful Snout/Welsh Wave

Heres 2 good local records from Knottwood nr Hebden Bridge,regards Bri.

11th July Pellon

Moths from the weekend at Manor Heath

A couple of new ones for me, Pebble Hook-tip and Small Yellow Wave.
Numerous Swallow Tailed, Dun-bar, 4 Poplar Hawkmoths, Buff Arches, Yellow Shell, Clouded Silver, Antler Moth and Dark Spectacle amongst more abundant species.
NB For you Birder / Moth enthusiast types, there is a Petrel ringing / Mothing night being held at Thornwick Bay this weekend, Saturday 17th July. Attended last year and had a really enjoyable evening and had good close views of 2 Storm Petrels and numerous Moths.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Fantastic Fritillaries

My third visit to Sheddon Clough finally turned up trumps. The weather was nice and sunny for a change, and the wind had become a gentle breeze. Just the right conditions for the Dark Green Fritillaries to come out of hiding and take nectar from the Marsh Thistles. Joining them were a few Meadow Browns, Small Heaths and Large Skippers. I managed to squeeze off a reasonable amount of footage, some showing the habitat and vegetation. Didn't see any signs of sexual activity, nor any signs of the larval food plants (Viola spp), which will no longer be in flower, making them harder to find. I'm sure there will be similar suitable habitat within Calderdale, so keep your eyes open for those Juncas flushes containing loads of thistles.

One for id anyone?

This visited the house last night via the window. "W" to the hind wing.

Small Dotted Buff .??

Scarce silver-lines

9th and 10th July Pellon


Grey / Dark Dagger

Coxcomb Prominent

Swallow Prominent

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Golden Plusia

Keep an eye out for golden Plusia over the next few weeks feeds on garden Delphiniums.Sean recorded one last week and this one is from last night in Northowram.

Friday, 9 July 2010

Waves,Shells and Emeralds

Perfect conditions at Knott Wood last night with Scallop Shell (Nice one Tina),Welsh wave(2)Small yellow wave (4)Common Emerald(amazing 15)Large Emerald (14)Light emerald(15)Green Arches (6)Common lustering(3)Purple Clay(30) ,the highlights.There are only two other records for Common Emerald in Calderdale one from Knott wood last week and one from Todmorden last year ,its good to know this species has a good population at knott wood.

Pellon last night

Common Footman

Pretty sure this is Green Pug.