Wednesday, 3 June 2015

#30DaysWild: Moth trapping

Day 3 of #30DaysWild was a day full of moths. Moth trapping and recording is something I do very often in the summer months, partly due to my job but also as a hobby. I love the mystery of it all - the fact that these creatures are flying throughout the night and we rarely get to see them, and the surprise in the morning when you look through the trap and see what you have found.

I mainly use a Robinsons light trap to trap and record the moths in my garden. This basically consists of a really bright light (Mercury vapour bulb), sat within a cone on top of a large round box full with eggboxes. Moths that are attracted to the light fly in, get a little confused and end up inside the large box full of eggboxes. Come morning the moths have snuggled themselves in to a corner of an eggbox and most will try to stay as still as possible throughout the day so they don't get spotted by predators. This makes them really easy to record and also great 'live specimens' to take to schools and show children.

This morning I had a total of 18 species of moth in the moth trap, including one of my favourites, the White Ermine. Named after the fluffy ermine coats, the White ermine has a really fluffy head.

White ermine from my garden moth trap

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