29/30 Mar 2011: total 13, species 4 (Min 7.2C then rising by morning, slight cloud cover with scant breeze).

March Tubic 0663 Diurnea fagella (1)
Dotted Border
1934 Agriopis marginaria (1)
Small Quaker
2182 Orthosia cruda (5)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (6)

28/29 Mar 2011: total 4, species 2 (Min 0.9C, Max 4.1C, clear with slight breeze). After a fortnight away in Jordan, where I managed to smash the internal zoom gears on day two on my main birding lens, back to another cold night!

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (3)
Pale Mottled Willow 2389 Paradrina clavipalpis (1)

12/13 Mar 2011: total 8, species 4 (Min 8.7C then rising by morning, overcast, light drizzle, slight breeze).

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (4)
Twin-spotted Quaker 2189 Orthosia munda (1)
Chestnut 2258 Conistra vaccinii (1)

11/12 Mar 2011: total 15, species 3 (Min 2.9C, Max 5.3C, patchy cloud, slight breeze).

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (3)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (10)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (2)

10/11 Mar 2011: total 11, species 3 (Min 3.3C, Max 5.3C, clear & breezy).

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (3)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (7)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

9/10 Mar 2011: total 10, species 1 (Min 3.3C, Max 3.7C, clear & breezy, very windy by morning).

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (10)

8/9 Mar 2011: total 17, species 3 (Min 2.9C, Max 3.7C, patchy cloud, slight breeze, drizzle by morning). Up goes the temperature and up go the numbers!

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (14)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

7/8 Mar 2011: total 9, species 2 (Min -4.0C, Max -1.3C, clear with slight breeze). I still find it hard to accept that these small little critters actually fly in sub-zero temperatures, but after what was clearly on show last night I can definitely tell you why. Sex!

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (7)

6/7 Mar 2011: total 10, species 2 (Min -3.0C, Max -1.3C, clear with faint breeze). There can only be one reason for moths flying in these sub-zero temperatures - yes, it's moth sex!

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (8)

5/6 Mar 2011: total 27, species 3 (Min 2.5C, Max 4.9C, overcast, calm with very slight intermittent drizzle). This is the earliest I have ever recorded moths in such numbers - they are at least a fortnight ahead of their usual time and all bar two were in the trap before 22.30.

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (8)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (18)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

4/5 Mar 2011: total 7, species 2 (Min -1.3C, Max -0.8C, clear & still). I still can barely believe that moths flew last night in sub-zero temperatures. It was zero degrees as dusk fell and minus an hour later when I turned the light on. Unbelieveable!

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (7)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (2)

3/4 Mar 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min -0.8C, Max 0.0C, clear & windy). Still b.. cold. My only surprise is that any moth moved at all!

Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

2/3 Mar 2011: total 4, species 2 (Min -2.1C, Max 1.7C, overcast, breezy). Another horribly cold night and by morning the frog spawn was frozen onto the ice. All that effort....

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (3)

1/2 Mar 2011: total 6, species 4 (Min 4.5C, Max 6.1C, overcast & despite the continuing cold northerly wind, an encouraging increase in moth numbers). I am grateful to Colin Hart of the Sussex Moth group for putting me right on yet another of my wrong ids. In past years I have been led astray by the size and colour of certain plume moths, believeing them to be White Plumes. Colin, howeverr, tells me that monodactyla is quite a variable moth, ranging from bone-white to light reddish brown, with
either no markings or well covered with dark or black marks. The diagnostic is that the pair of spines nearest the body on the hind legs are unequal in length. The outer spine is about half the length of the inner.

Rusty Oak/Birch Button 1044/1045 Acleris ferrugana/notana (1)
Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (1)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (2)
Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (2)

28 Feb/1 Mar 2011: total 4, species 2 (Min 4.9C, Max 6.4C, overcast, windy with horrible wind chill factor). I could have predicted the recent cold nights. Every year is the same. The frogs spawn and the cold immediately returns! Even this year, when they were much later than usual, the same thing happened.

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (3)

27/28 February 2011: total 3, species 2 (Min 2.9C, Max 7.5C, clear with breeze).

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (2)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)

26/27 February 2011: total 2, species 1 (Min 4.1C, Max 8C, clear & breezy). Getting colder again, but the first frog spawn of the year.

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (2)

25/26 February 2011: total 2, species 2 (Min 10.5CC, Max 11.2C, overcast, windy, slight showers).

Small Quaker 2182 Orthosia cruda (1)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)

24/25 February 2011: total 2, species 2 (Min 5.3C, Max 10.1C, overcast, no wind, light mist by morning). After a few days away in Devon and missing what seems like several mild nights, it was good to scoop up these two. While I was away, Tony Davis, ace Sussex micro moth expert was kind enough to correct a number of my wrong ids and I will put these right over the weekend. He is also no mean slouch when it comes to the macros either, pointing out that Dark Chestnuts here in Sussex rarely make it through the winter. On reflection, and double-checking my id image, he was quite right. My recent postings were just another Chestnut! Many thanks Tony for keeping me on the straight and narrow.

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)
Chestnut 2258 Conistra vaccinii (1)

19/20 February 2011: total 2, species 2 (Min 7.9C, Max 6.4C, overcast, breezy).

Dotted Border 1934 Agriopis marginaria (1)
Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)

18/19 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 5.7C, Max 6.4C, overcast, breezy, rain by morning).

Chestnut 2258 Conistra vaccinii (1)

17/18 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 3.7C, Max 5.7C, cloudy, breezy, misty by morning and still cold).

Dotted Border 1934 Agriopis marginaria (1)

16/17 February 2011: total 6, species 4 (Min 2.9C, Max 5.7C, hazy moon with scant breeze). Considering how cold it felt, there was a record number of moths for week 7. Some of my mothing friends have frequently bemoaned the fact that by the time they get to their traps in the morning, there is nothing there and they have all flown. I think they are missing the point. Of the moths captured last night, only one was actually in the trap, the remainder in the near vicinity of the light. You only have to consider the summer months when moths swarm to the light to underdstand that there are considerable numbers that do not actually enter the trap. This means that it is important to carefully scan the surrounding area and one of the reasons why I find my strategy of using my greenhouse actually increases my moth count.

Winter Shade 1025 Tortricodes alternella (2)
Rusty Oak/Birch Button
1044/1045 Acleris ferrugana/notana (1)
Dotted Border
1934 Agriopis marginaria (2)
Chestnut 2258 Conistra vaccinii (1)

15/16 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 4.9C, Max 7.9C, patchy cloud, slight breeze).

Common Quaker 2187 Orthosia cerasi (2)

14/15 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 7.2C then rising by morning, overcast, scant breeze with intermittent light drizzle). This is only the second time I have trapped this species and this time I fully intend to get an image!

Dotted Border 1934 Agriopis marginaria (1)

13/14 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 6.1C, Max 10.1C, heavy rain clearing by morning). It has to be the same moth, no doubt grateful to the Moth Hotel for staying dry. The frogs were busy mating in the garden pond.

Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

12/13 February 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 5.7C, Max 6.1C, clear with slight breeze, fine drizzle by morning). As if to prove me wrong, last night's Hebrew Character actually made it into the trap. This is the earliest I have ever recorded this common species, ten days earlier than in 2009 and well over a month earlier than last year! The lower temperatures meant that nothing else emerged.

Hebrew Character 2190 Orthosia gothica (1)

11/12 February 2011: total 2, species 2 (Min 11.9C, Max 12.6C, light rain clearing by morning). After several nights of temperatures in double digits, a welcome sighting of a Spring Usher. Like so many moths, it was attracted to the light, but did not enter the trap, resting on the outside of the greenhouse.

Winter Shade 1025 Tortricodes alternella (1)
Spring Usher
1932 Agriopis leucophaearia (1)

10/11 February 2011: total 5, species 2 (Min 10.5C, Max 11.2C, overcast, windy with drizzle by morning).

Winter Shade 1025 Tortricodes alternella (3)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (2)

9/10 February 2011: total 3, species 3 (Min 8.7C then rising by morning, overcast, scant breeze with light rain by morning).

Common Flat-body 0688 Agonopterix heracliana (1)
Winter Shade
1025 Tortricodes alternella (1)
Common Quaker
2187 Orthosia cerasi (1)

23/24 January 2011: total 1, species 1 (found indoors after bringing in some apples from the storage shed).

Light Brown Apple Moth 0998 Epiphyas postvittana (1)

16/17 January 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 10.9C, Max 12.6C, overcast & calm with rain by morning). An incredibly warm night for the time of year!

Pale Brindled Beauty 1926 Phigalia pilosaria (1)

2/3 January 2011: total 1, species 1 (Min 2.5C, Max 4.5C, overcast & calm). It's getting colder again!

Winter Moth 1799 Operophtera brumata (1)

1/2 January 2011: total 2, species 1 (Min 3.7C, Max 6.8C, overcast & calm).

Winter Moth 1799 Operophtera brumata (2)