Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Sep 10th Mousehold Heath

Moth Night at Mousehold Heath
It was moth night at Mousehold last night (Sep 10th) and conditions were perfect. It was quite a warm night and the moths were on the wing in force. Lured by the bright light of the moth trap, they soon arrived in good numbers and landed not just inside the trap, but also on us and everywhere in the surrounding area. Midges were also swarming around us and it was hard to speak at times without getting a mouthful of them in the process. The arrival of a hornet made half of us back away in panic. It was pretty dozy and was flying into two of us (not me thankfully). I have never seen two manly men jump up so quickly! Only David was brave enough to capture it to restore the peace and to remove it from the trap.
As well as the hornet, we had plenty of great moth species enter the trap. Many of them were yellow underwings of one kind or another and pale emeralds. These moths in particular were everywhere and were the main culprits for flying into us, sometimes with a slightly forceful wallop. Here's some of the other highlights of the night...
Bordered Yellow Underwing
Large Yellow Underwing
Square-spot Rustic
Copper Underwing
Light Emerald
A worn Light Emerald
Double Lined Pug
Setaceous Hebrew Character
Yellow Shell
Golden Argent
Out of all the moths though, it were the micros that really excited us. Though we not sure what they all were, there was one in particular that had us hooked on its beauty. Sitting on the lid of the trap, we spotted this extremely tiny speck of shining gold. Finding it felt like we were starting another Gold Rush. It was so small that it could sit on the centre of your finger nail and there would still be plenty of space around it. I'm amazed that my camera could even capture a clear image of it capturing every miniscule detail that was too small for our eyes to see, especially in the dead of night. We were determined to ID this speck of living gold dust. In the end, we all decided that it was a golden argent.
Another micro moth that we didn't ID
Alder Pearl Moth?

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