Warwickshire Moth Recording Highlights– August 2004
4th August – Fenny Drayton (R. Ruban)
A specimen of The Annulet (Charissa obscurata) was taken by Rita in her garden trap.
Fenny Drayton is just the wrong side of the A5 for VC38, but there have been past records of this species taken in the late 1970’s in the Nuneaton area. Rita and Martin Kennard trapped at Hartshill a few days later but without seeing this species. Maybe this would be a good target species for a Warks Moth Group meeting in 2005?
4th August – Ryton Wood (M. Astley)
Peacock Moth (Macaria notata) was seen by Mike Astley in Ryton Wood on 4th August. This is the first record of this species since 1992.
10th & 11th August – Ashorne House (B. Laney)
A Hummingbird Hawk Moth (Macroglossum stellatarum) was seen in the grounds of Ashorne House on both days.
12th August – Hartshill (R. Ruban & M. Kennard)
In a short session, the first county record of Pyralid Calamotropha paludella was taken, which is a Nationally Notable B species.
Micro-moth Agonopterix subpropinquella was also taken, which, along with a specimen taken in May at Oversley Wood, are the first sightings of this species in the county since 1957.
21st August – Ufton Fields (Warks Moth Group)
Micro-moth Agonopterix purpurea was taken, this being only the second county record since Oversley Wood in 1960.
A specimen of Bilberry Tortrix (Aphelia viburnana) was found. This again has not been seen for some time, the last from Sutton Park in 1984.
An unusual turn-up for a rural location was the Pyralid Meal Moth (Pyralis farinalis), this being a new 10 Km square record.
Amongst the macro’s, Bordered Beauty (Epione repandaria) made its first showing in 10 Km square SP36 and a possible Pimpinel Pug (Eupithecia pimpinellata) was taken away by David Brown for confirmation.
August – General
Epagoge grotiana was found at a fourth site for 2004, on 4th August in Martin Kennard’s garden trap in Leamington Spa.
North Warwickshire and the corresponding parts of Worcestershire appear to be a local stronghold for the Nationally Notable B micro species Pammene fasciana, with a further specimen taken at Keresley, Coventry on 2nd August and several seen in Hall Green, Birmingham by Alan Prior and Val Weston throughout July and August.
Tortrix moth Dichrorampha acuminatana is scarce in VC38, the 3rd county record being taken on 15th August in Leamington Spa by Martin Kennard.
Martin has also taken a possible Phycitodes maritima in his garden trap. This would be another county first and is awaiting confirmation. This species is more normally associated with coastal habitats, but has moved into Worcestershire over the past couple of years.
Ringed China-mark (Parapoynx stratiotata) was recorded by Chris Ivin in his garden trap on 16th August and was also taken earlier in the year at Goldicote Cutting by Chris and Ray Bliss. This species has been recorded at several sites in the county but not since 1983. Robbins also states that this species has not been taken at UV light.
Vine's Rustic (Hoplodrina ambigua) has been taken in 2 new 10 Km squares – SP24 by Chris Ivin (12th, 16th and 18th) and SP36 by Martin Kennard (15th) and appears to be continuing its slow spread within Warwickshire.
Crescent (Celaena leucostigma) was seen for the second year running in Chris Ivin’s garden trap.
Small Rufous (Coenobia rufa) made a first showing in 10 Km square SP38 on 8th August in Keresley, Coventry.
Just a reminder for next season, that the 4 species of Ear Moth can only be reliably determined by genitalia examination. The commonest species seen in the county is
Ear Moth (Amphipoea oculea), but there have also been a few records of the Saltern Ear (Amphipoea fucosa paludis), Crinan Ear (Amphipoea crinanensis) and Large Ear (Amphipoea lucens) taken over the years. If you are fortunate to find any sort of Ear Moth please retain the specimen for confirmation of species.
MapMate County Database
As at 11th September 2004, the county totals for Lepidoptera stand like this -
Total macro-moth species: 604 (67115 records)
Species number does not include species aggregates.
Total micro-moth species: 735 (5787 records)
Species number adjusted for removal of species aggregates. Numerous historic records remain to be entered into the database. John Robbins accepted a total of 798 species in his 1997 atlas.
N. J. Stone