MOTHS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN OCTOBER 2020
A handsome moth seen only in the autumn. It comes to light and may also be seen feeding at twilight on ivy blossom and fermenting fruit.
Overwintering as an egg, the night-feeding caterpillar will eat the leaves of a variety of deciduous trees in the following spring.
The new Moths Atlas tells us there have been major declines in both abundance and distribution since 1970. How often I am having to say this.
This moth like the Flounced Chestnut and other Sallow moths are well-camouflaged like autumn leaves. It’s the commonest (although still suffering substantial declines in abundance) and most widely-distributed of this group of single-brooded autumn moths. Its distribution is increasing, but how much is this a factor of more people out there trapping in the past 50 years? It would be interesting to know how many and where, are the trappers every year…..
Another autumn moth, feeding largely on Beech here in our area although elsewhere it will feed on Field Maple which scarcely occurs in Cornwall as it prefers more limey soil and is an abundant roadside planting around Plymouth, on limestone.
This moth is nationally common and widespread and shows a long-term increase in its distribution.
This is an interesting one as it is closely tied to the Ash tree. The caterpillar emerges in spring to feed on the unopened flower and leaf buds of Ash. How will it fare as the Ash declines due to die-back? Here in Cornwall, it seems to be having a good year, even appearing in West Cornwall where there are very few records.