The last few weeks has seen a splendid array of new moth species for our garden, whilst many commoner species have been in fewer number and some species not turning up at all, the arrival of some new species has made for a pleasant distraction from the worrying trend in a decline in insect numbers.
So let us start with the headline species. Acer Sober (Anarsia innoxiella) on the 15th June, this is by far the most exciting species in the current run of new moths in the garden. Not only new for the garden, but new for North Wales. This is a species which is spreading, but currently on the NBN Atlas the nearest record is just outside Leicester (well away from our North Wales garden). Obviously there will be records from the last few years to be added to the national database but it shows how far this moth is spreading a short space of time.
The Acer Sober likes members of the Acer family as its name suggest and we have two big Field Maples over the garden fence, so that it what they a re probably liking in the area.
The second highlight has to be the White-barred Groundling (Recurvaria leucatella), a new species to Flintshire and the first record in North Wales since 1993. With some micro moths you can expect some to slip under the radar as many moth enthusiasts are put off from micro moths as some are difficult to identify. Some. however, are very disintcive and do not go un-noticed. This moth being one of them, with distinctive black and white colouring and and obvious white band across the moth it is a pretty and obvious thing. This was also the same night as the Acer Sober, 15th June.
The next moth new to the garden is a Grass Rivulet (Perizoma albulata) on the 13th June, this is a species which has thought to have declined by 96%. It appears to prefer the more lowland areas of North Wales and in Flintshire it is not common at all, so a delight to get it in the garden and who knows, if this species continues to decline it may be the only one we ever get.
Whilst these three species have been the stars, we have also had an Old Lady (Mormo maura), on the 22nd June which is the earliest record of this species in North Wales and we have also had an influx of Green Oak Tortrix (Tortrix viridana), a pretty little moth which seems to be arriving as a migrant rather than from the local population, as some people on the East coast have recorded 100's in their traps during June.
Who knows what the next few weeks will bring, but hopefully something a little bit special.