Friday, 12 November 2010

Flightless Winter Moths - trapping!


This 1938 Wills Cigarette card shows how the application of grease around the circumference of a tree can be used to trap the ascending flightless females.
A search on Ebay for "Moth trap" will show various products, at this time of year, that can be used for this purpose.
I am wondering if any of these could be adapted so that the moths are not harmed but merely slowed down enough to be photographed and then released............?

4 comments:

Dean said...

Derek, i can`t remember where i saw it exactly, but securing strips of corrugated cardboard (minus the grease)round the trunks of trees is a good way to find them. Apparently they`ll use it as shelter during the daylight hours.

charlie streets said...

Sounds interesting Dean - a bit like Tutt's method of tying sacking round the trunk of a tree stuffed full of leaf mould so that when all the larvae that fed in the canopy descend the trunk to pupate they reach the sacking first and think they're on the ground. Then later the pupae can be harvested at will.

Dean said...

Charlie, i suppose the corrugations simulate bark crevices (in which they hide in naturally).

charlie streets said...

Indeed Dean.I suppose you'd have to tie it tight around the bottom so they don't just crawl straight through on the way back down.

I wanted to try and photograph them as they are crawling up the trunk. There seems precious little info on the web about how fast they move, how high up the trunk do they climb, is dusk better than total darkness,when do they mate, how many per trunk etc.Hopefully all be able to answer some of these questions in the coming weeks.