Saturday, 31 December 2011

Siskin on the garden feeder

All quiet at the moment but a few Siskin have started to visit the garden feeder.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Great Grey Shrike - Farley Moor

The Farley bird reappeared today and it sound like the bird was also present at Wragg's Quarry so it confirms the two bird theory.

Great Grey Shrike

Brambling Bent Lane

Still struggling to get a decent photo although I think the flock is now over 400.

Common Buzzard

At least 5 Common Buzzard over the house today, nice to see some blue sky!
Common Buzzard

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Brown Rat - Whitworth Park

Not everyone's favourite but James came across this Brown Rat in the Whitworth Park this afternoon.
Brown Rat

More moths

The mild temperature last night (max 11 min 8) produced good moth numbers - for December
8 December Moths
6 Mottled Umber
1 Scarce Umber
1 Chestnut

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Pink-footed Geese - Beeley Moor

It was snowing hard early this morning with patches of low cloud, A skein of about 200 Pink-footed Geese emerged from the mist calling loudly but just as quickly disappeared heading towards the Lincolnshire coast.
Pink-footed Geese

Friday, 16 December 2011

Kingfisher - Whitworth Park, Darley Dale

Came across this Kingfisher on the pond at the Whitworth, always a great bird to see. Hopefully it will stay around for a while.

Grey Partridge - Beeley Moor

A covey of 6 Grey Partridge on the edge of Beeley Moor showed well this morning. 
The Grey Partridge has suffered a massive decline in the last decade so it was great to see this group happily feeding (photo James Butler).
Grey Partridge

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Raven - Beeley Moor

These 3 Raven were the highlight of this mornings visit to Beeley.


Monday, 5 December 2011

First snow of the winter

First of the winter snow last night continued on and off during the day. There was a good 2 inches on Beeley Moor but not much in the valleys. No birds but it looked good.

Beeley Moor in the snow

Friday, 2 December 2011

Grey Heron - Chatsworth

Flying out of the shadows in to the sunlight, this photo was taken by my son James.
Grey Heron

Still a few moths flying

Despite a maximum temperature of 4 Centigrade and a minimum close to zero there are still a few moths around and I caught two Mottled Umber, Winter Moth and 2 Chestnut last night. 
The Winter Moth shows the darker hind wing which is a useful feature to separate it from the Northern Winter Moths taken earlier in November.
Winter Moth

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Water Vole - Bakewell

Came across this confiding Water Vole close to Bakewell centre early afternoon.

Water Vole

Brambling - Bent Lane

Cold and windy on Beeley this morning but a nice mixed finch flock on Bent Lane included at least 50 Brambling.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

More December Moths

Another good catch for November, the temperature staying around 9 Centigrade to midnight then dropping down to 4 as the sky cleared;
December Moth 7 
Mottled Umber 6
Scarce Umber 2
Spruce Carpet 1
Satellite 1
Chestnut 1
Acleris sparsana1.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Another striking Mottled Umber

Still catching a few moths despite the lower temperatures; 2 December Moths, Spruce Carpet, Red-green Carpet,  Mottled Umber, Scarce Umber and Feathered Thorn last night.
Mottled Umber

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Autumnal Moth

Finally caught an Autumnal Moth which is sufficiently clearly marked to identify on the basis of the shape of the median fascia. I caught two last night which, with the two I'd put as probables on 9th seems to support the view that Autumnal Moth has a later flight period than November Moth.
Also caught 6 Mottled Umber, Scarce Umber, 4 Red-green Carpet, Spruce Carpet and a Yellow-line Quaker.

Autumnal Moth

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Great Grey Shrike - Beeley Moor

Finally caught up with the Great Grey Shrike this morning, close to Wraggs Quarry. Good scope views but distant for photos. Not much else although 150 Golden Plover flying over is a good count, 2 Peregrine and a few Crossbill.

Great Grey Shrike

Friday, 11 November 2011

Another Rusty-dot Pearl

Third Rusty-dot Pearl of the autumn last night, also December Moth, Feathered Thorn, 2 November Moths, Northern Winter Moth and a Chestnut.
Rusty-dot Pearl

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Last night's catch

In addition to the possible Autumnal Moth last night the catch included 2 Mottled Umber, 3 Scarce Umber, November Moth, Feathered Thorn, 3 December Moths and the micro Blastobasis lacticollela.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Possible Autumnal Moths

During the past week I've caught 3 Epirrita moths which have shown the median fascia appearing to curve away from the distinct discal spot which may therefore be Autumnal Moths. They are noticeably smaller than the typical November. Unfortunately none have been really well marked individuals.

possible Autumnal Moth

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Agonopterix ciliella

Taken at home this evening Agonopterix of hindwing shows the multiple fuscous  bands in the cilia which separate it from heracliana

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Exapate congelatella

Caught two Exapate congelatella last night, an unusual Tortrix in that the female only has vestigial wings and is flightless. Another 3 Scarce Umber, 2 Feathered Thorn, 2 November Moth and 2 Winter/Northern Winter.

Exapate congelatella

Not so Scarce Umber

Caught another three Scarce Umber last night.

Scarce Umber

Friday, 4 November 2011

Scarce Umber

Another good catch, despite the rain, with the minimum temperature at 10 Centigrade.
A total of 32 moths of 11 species; Scarce Umber was the star which I only catch occasionally plus 11 November Moths (one of which warrants a closer look), 2 Juniper and 3 Red-green Carpet, 2 Northern Winter Moths, December Moth, Mottled Umber, Red-line Quaker, a Barred Sallow and 2 Satellite.
Scarce Umber

Thursday, 3 November 2011

December Moth

Finally caught 2 December Moths, both males,last night in the continuing mild weather, also female Feathered Thorn with 2 males, Mottled Umber, Grey shoulder-knot, a couple of November Moths, Juniper Carper (including my smallest with a forewing of 12mm) and a Red-green Carpet.
December Moth - male

Feathered Thorn - female

I must have caught 20 or 30 Feathered Thorn this autumn but this is the first female.
Feathered Thorn - female

Mottled Umber

A nicely marked individual.
Mottled Umber

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Northern Winter Moth

Just when you think it's all over...caught 2 Northern Winter Moths last night, one with a forewing of 18mm the other 15mm so a fair difference in size.

Northern Winter Moth

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

End of the mothing season drawing near

Approaching the end of the mothing season now. Still catching a few moths whilst the weather remains mild but there are only one or two moths that could be realistically added to the year list.

31/10 Feathered Thorn 2. November Moth 5, Red-green Carpet 4, Juniper Carpet 2, Yellow-line Quaker 1, red-line Quaker 1, Chestnut 2.

30/10 Feathered Thorn 4, November Moth 7, Red-green Carpet 7, Juniper Carpet 4, Satellite, Blair's Shoulder-knot, Silver Y 2, Yellow-line Quaker, Chestnut 3.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Autumn Green Carpet

My second Autumn Green Carpet of the year but first for the garden. 
This moth and its close relative the Red-green Carpet would make an interesting study. Both moths over-winter as the adult female and feed on a range of broad-leaved trees but whilst the Red-green first appeared in Derbyshire in the late 1980's and has become steadily commoner, expanding its range the Autumn Green has remained scarce in Derbyshire and is declining in southern Britain at least.
Autumn Green Carpet

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Red Sword-grass

Caught my first Red Sword-grass for the garden last night, I have previously caught it at Clough Wood in the spring and Simon Roddis has also caught it on three or four occasions in Darley Dale so present in very low numbers in the area, otherwise the catch was similar to last night.

Red Sword-grass

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

November Moths

The majority of Epirrita I catch are almost uniform grey with little sign of any banding and no discal spot, these are two well marked individuals by my standards both of which I think conform to November Moth with regard to the shape of the post-median fascia even though the discal spot is well clear of the fascia.
Another reasonable catch last night with 2 Barred Sallow, another Feathered Thorn, 9 November Moths, 4 Brick, Merveille du Jour, 4 Yellow-line Quaker, Red-line Quaker, 3 Satellite, 2 Juniper Carpet, Angle Shades, Chestnut and a Brown-spot Pinion.

November Moth

Monday, 24 October 2011

Acleris ferrugana/ notana - Clough Wood

Trapping in Clough Wood with Brian Statham we were unable to escape the wind but still managed 3 November Moths, 3 Red-green Carpet, Large Yellow Underwing, Green-brindled Crescent, Merveille du Jour, Barred Sallow, 5 Brick, Chestnut, 2 Acleris sparsana and Acleris ferrugana/ notana.
Acleris ferrugana / notana

Warm but windy

Trapping at home last night in mild but windy conditions I recorded 3 Feathered Thorn, Spruce Carpet, November Moth, Juniper Carpet, 2 Yellow-line Quaker and a Brick.

Acleris rhombana - Clough Wood 16/10/11

Didn't pay all that much attention to this micro when we caught it last week, it's not in very good condition but looking at the photo it is clearly Acleris rhombana which is probably fairly common in the area.
Acleris rhombana

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Last night's catch

Another mild evening with the minimum temperatures around 8 Centigrade again produced a reasonable catch; 9 November Moth, Spruce Carpet, 3 Juniper Carpet, 2 Red-green Carpet, 4 Yellow-line Quaker, 3 Brick, 3 Satellite, Blair's Shoulder-knot and a Silver Y.

Milder night 20th October

Overnight on the 20th the minimum temperature was around 8 Centigrade and a few moths took advantage of the warmer weather; 9 November Moth, 2 Juniper Carpet, Green-brindled Crescent, Yellow-line Quaker, Red-line Quaker and a Chestnut.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Too cold for moths

It's too cold for moths at the moment, just a couple of Juniper Carpet last night but came across this Ruby Tiger caterpillar enjoying the afternoon sun.
Ruby Tiger - caterpillar

Monday, 17 October 2011

Decent catch at home

Thirty-one moths of eleven species is not bad for mid-October. Thirteen November Moths (agg), 2 Satellite, 2 Barred Sallow, another Large Wainscott, 5 Juniper Carpet, 2 Red-green Carpet, Angle Shades, Large Yellow Underwing, Red-line Quaker, Yellow-line Quaker and a Chestnut.

Diurnea lipsiella - Clough Wood

This is the micro from last night, Diurnea lipsiella, a male, the female like fagella has under developed wings. Not sure of the status in Derbyshire but I would imagine it is fairly common in mature oak woodland.

Diurnea lipsiella

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