Thursday, 21 April 2016

moth trap overnight !

Finally I managed to get the moth trap out last night. Up early this morning to check what was caught. Not many moths; only 5 species, 8 individuals. But of those were 2 absolutely stunning moths that I haven't trapped for some time. The Mullein moth.

Here they were as found in the moth trap when I opened it.

I put them both into a specimen box with lid.

Close up of the head.

I then released them on to our favourite 'old' Buddleia bush in the garden (above and below).

We don't often see the Mullein moth. It is generally common in the UK although less common or scarcer, also known as local, in Wales. But every year we get the caterpillars on our Buddleia bushes in the garden. These are also a delight to see. I recommend you have a close look at Buddleia bushes in July/August. Look for evidence of eaten leaves and quite often they're underneath a leaf. Easily identifiable ; mainly white body with lots of yellow and black spots/small patches. Obviously you'll see small and then larger ones as they grow.

Here is  link to a YouTube video of the caterpillars as I cannot find my own photo of one.

I was thrilled to see these 2 moths this morning. 
According to our records the last time we trapped one was 2010, and before that 2005 and 2004.
Other moths from this morning were Brindled Beauty, Early Grey, Common Quaker and Hebrew Character.

I had to share the beautiful Brindled Beauty.

Mid morning I was gadrening with my mum. We have made some exciting plans to transform a patch of the garden.

 We are digging it over every day in preparation for a wildflower patch. I have found a brilliant product on the internet here in the UK ....
It's like pieces of turf with the wildflowers already started off growing on it. It's accepted in most soils/ground and would need a sunny position however there are different mixes such as one for shady areas, a cottage garden look and one for bees and birds which we will be choosing. Order online, or by phone, and when it arrives you just unroll it on the area you want it. Sounds easy and I can't wait! I will be posting photos it's process on here.

There is a huge campaign for help our pollinating species of insects due to declining numbers. I hope some of you will take from my example and have a go yourselves. You could have a mini wildflower meadow in your garden which will give you the chance to discover butterflies and bees, and whatever else might turn up! 
If everyone does a little bit, it all helps and hopefully numbers will start to increase in local populations. Even if it's just a pot of flowers that have been labelled and sold as a product that attract bees and insects.

I have found some information on a larger scale online if you wish to find out more called 'The National Pollinator Strategy: for bees and other pollinators in England'

Here is a link to information about the sorts of plants and flowers for insects

Bumblebee specific info here

More specific information here about creating a pollinator garden

For more information about how to help wildlife in your garden in general look here (UK)

Thank you for reading.

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