Butterfly & Moth Sightings:
Many thousands of records are sent in each year, mostly by our Lincolnshire Members. We use this information to monitor how well different species are faring, and concentrate our effort on the butterflies and moths that need the most help.
We cannot realistically cover all those records here, and aim, therefore, to show first sightings, unusual sightings and indeed anything you feel might be of interest to others.
If you are in any doubt at all, send it in anyway! Please send your sightings for these pages to Lawrie Poole firstname.lastname@example.org
County Butterfly Records:
We are trying to streamline how we officially record all Lincolnshire butterfly sightings. Please click HERE to download a spreadsheet which you can use to put all your sightings on. This can be e-mailed to John Davison, our new Butterfly County Recorder, every so often through the main season. He will transfer your records to a Master Form which he will e-mail, periodically, to Butterfly Conservation HQ. This way, your records will contribute to the Butterfly Atlas, which is regularly updated.There are instructions with the form. John's e-mail address is: email@example.com
All moth sightings for North Lincs. (VC 54 - roughly North of River Witham) can be reported to:
Colin Smith, 3 Dear Street, MARKET RASEN, Lincolnshire, LN8 3BH.
All moth sightings for South Lincs. (VC 53 - roughly South of River Witham) can be reported to
Martin Gray, Hollyside, Manor Lane, Broadholme, Lincoln, LN1 2NA
Latest Butterfly & Moth Sightings
- Martin Kew ' ... had a walk around Castle Bytham Quarry today and was pleased to see 6+ Dingy Skippers in one small area. Unfortunately no Grizzled Skippers.
- Peter Cawdell had a Holly Blue both yesterday and today nectaring on Rosemary in his Lincoln garden.
25th April: Despite showers, many people were out & about today:-
- Brian Hedley made a brief visit to Twyford Woods this afternoon. The partly sunny conditions produced 4 Grizzled Skippers, 9 Peacocks, 2 Speckled Woods, a Small White and a Large White. Brian had a Mint moth and an Angle Shades in his Marton garden this afternoon. He had his actinic lamp out last night nd had 26 moths of 11 species including: Purple Thorn, Shuttle-shaped Dart, Red Twin-spot Carpet, Powdered Quaker, Garden Carpet, Pebble Prominent and Double-striped Pug. (By-catch included a Queen Wasp and the burying beetle Nicrophorus humator!)
- Maureen & Bernard Featherstone spent a few hours at Whisby NR today to hear the Nightingales singing - not many butterflies about before about 11-30 a.m! However, they saw 8 species: 7 Peacock, 4 Orange Tip, 2 Speckled Wood, 2 Green-veined White, a Large White, a Small Tortoiseshell, a Brimstone and a Comma.
- Andy Sims at Swanpool had ' ... 13 moths of 6 species in my garden trap last night: 4 Double-striped Pug; 6 Hebrew Character and singletons of Water Carpet; Campion (nfy); Lunar Marbled Brown & Shuttle-shaped Dart (nfy).'
- Rachel Scopes from Horncastle writes: 'I finally put the trap out in the garden last night: 13 species, including Common Quaker, Hebrew Character, Spectacle, Flame Shoulder, Waved Umber, Garden Carpet and a couple of nice fresh V-Pugs. A couple of nights ago a Streamer came to the porch light - a moth I've only ever seen in the garden once previously. I was pleased to see that and it encouraged me to get the trap out!'
- Peter Cawdell says: 'Not many mentions of Speckled Wood so far but I have had one in my Glebe Park Lincoln car park area this morning amongst the trees. Every year there are a few around here. They don't need many trees and bushes to establish themselves.'
- Chris Howes at Grimsthorpe Park saw his first Dingy Skipper of the year, his first Large White of the year and his first Grizzled Skipper of the year! A pretty good day! James Ashton has already seen 2 Grizzled Skippers in the Park; one was at Jackson's Pit. The little colony of Grizzled Skippers around there, hangs on!
- Lawrie Poole saw 3 favourite Spring butterflies in his Thorpe on the Hill garden today: a Holly Blue; a Brimstone and an Orange Tip.
- In the morning, Les Austin saw a male Common Blue in Horsegate Field Road, Goxhill.
- Andy Sims at his Swanpool home had ' ... 10 moths in my trap: 1 Lunar Marbled Brown nfy; 4 Hebrew Character; 2 Clouded Drab; 1 Common Quaker & 1 Double-striped Pug.'
- Toby Ludlow at Coningsby saw a Large White.
- Ian McGlynn saw 2 Orange Tips - first for the year for him - at Belton House.
- Tim Bagworth ' ... set a MV lamp at Willowtree Fen NR last and got 24 moths of 5 species; 10 Powdered Quaker; 8 Hebrew Character; 4 Clouded Drab; 1 Common Quaker & 1 Swallow Prominent. Also, earlier, in the afternoon, was the first Speckled Wood I have seen down there this year.'
- Brian Libell 'phoned to say that he and his wife, Liz, had seen 2 Green Hairstreaks on their North Somercotes farm today. This is their first sighting of the species this year. They also saw an Orange Tip, 2 Brimstones - one male, one female - 3 Peacock; a Small Tortoiseshell and a Green-veined White. They saw their first Holly Blue of the year on 20th April. Brian was very pleased to report 5 Ring Ousels (3m & 2f) which had been around their land over the past few days!
- Lawrie & Jenny Poole saw their first Holly Blue of the year at Thorpe on the Hill.
- Tim Bagworth had his MV light out in his Spalding garden and caught a Hebrew Character and a Double-striped Pug.
- Pete Burnett at Fiskerton caught 14 moths of just 4 species: Hebrew Character, Early Grey, Powdered Quaker and a single Pebble Prominent. Pete comments: ' ... a bit early?'
- Derek Fox saw his first of the year: Holly Blue, Orange Tip (male) & Small White in his Langworth Garden. Also were a Green-veined White; 2 Brimstone (female egg-laying on Buckthorne); 2 Small Tortoishell and a Peacock.
- Sue Kobish spotted an Orange Tip (m) in her Thorpe on the Hill garden.
- Iain Leach saw 2 Green Hairstreaks today, at Donna Nook between the car park and Pyes Hall! This could well be the first County sighting this year of the Green Hairstreak. He went to Twyford Woods later, and saw 3-4 Grizzled Skippers. As Iain says: ' ... it’s all getting going at last so trying to get lots of photos taken!'
- Mark Johnson spotted these two mating Green-veined Whites near Dunholme.
- Pete Burnett from Fiskerton writes: '... this little 'un landed on our window mid-afternoon! New for the garden and thanks to Martin Gray who confirmed the moth as an Esperia sulphurella. Apparently this species likes the sun.'
- Martin Kew on his Transect walk today saw his first Grizzled Skipper in the Sanctuary area of Twyford Woods. He also counted some 11 Peacocks on the runways between the reserves and 19 more on the way back to the car park! (For the record, Martin saw the first Grizzled Skipper on 21st April last year)
- Jo Crinks from Sleaford saw the following today: 1 Brimstone; 3 Whites; 2 Orange Tips; 5 Commas & 20+ Peacock butterflies.
- Vic, Rachael and Judy Theaker ' ... had two walks today: one at Chambers Farm Wood where we saw 6 Brimstones; 5 Peacocks; 1 Green-veined White; 3 Commas & 1 Small Tortoiseshell. The other walk was in the afternoon at Whisby. There we saw 1 Speckled Wood; 2 Commas & 2 Peacock.'
17th April: Richard Davison ' ... found another interesting moth next to the security light on the Education Building at Whisby Nature Park last night. Just the one, but another new moth for me, a Streamer.'
- Holly Blues were seen by Harry Turner in Louth, and Ian McGlynn in Bourne.
- Pete Burnett writes: ' ... had the actinic in Fiskerton Long Wood last night: 30 moths with Brindled Beauty, Streamer & 2 Satellite, all new for the year. Usually catch Satellite in the Autumn - not had many spring records.'
- Brian Libell at North Somercotes saw his first Green-veined White of the year. He added that he had a female Brimstone & 2 Comma in his garden on 9th April. Last September/October he regularly had 5 or 6 female Brimstone butterflies nectaring on Everlasting Sweet Pea. (Our first Field Trip of the year is to Brian's Byron Farm on 9th May. Target species is the Green Hairstreak. Book the date! We hope to go on to Donna Nook in the afternoon. See the Events page for full details.)
- Phil Emmett sent in this photo of a male Orange Tip, taken at Chambers Farm Wood on April 9th. This could well be the first sighting of an Orange Tip in Lincs this year? Phil also saw a Comma.
- Phil Lee e-mailed the following: ' ... 16 Macro moths of 7 species in my Misterton garden trap last night. Of note was a Garden Carpet which I have never had in April before. My previous earliest was 7th May.'
- Hugh Middleton reported: ' ... spent the afternoon in the Bardey Limewoods. In Ivy Wood saw 9 Peacock & a Small Tortoiseshell. In Orchid Ride: 4 Green-veined White; 11 Peacock & 6 Brimstone. At Snakeholme Pit: 5 Peacock; a female Orange Tip; a Small Tortoiseshell & a Comma.'
- Mark Johnson saw an Orange Tip butterfly near Dunholme.
- Alan Dale at Low Hameringham writes: 'Went out at dusk and found a cracking Water Carpet on a window. That prompted me to get the MV trap out and was rewarded with a total of 21 moths, including a dark Early Thorn and two Diamond-back Moths, also new for the year.'
12th April: Ian & Jeannie McGlynn went to a place called Gedney Drove End, just North of Long Sutton, and walked along the sea banks, 'so windy it was unbelieveable, but we saw 4 Small Tortoiseshell on our walk.'
- Martin Gray decided to have a' natural history day' yesterday, and it has turned out to have been quite a successful one. ' ... In the morning I visited Kirkby Moor to look for the larval cases of Coleophora juncicolla and had success with several emerging from the debris following sweeping the Heather. This is a new Lincolnshire record. Also seen was the case of a Coleophora pyrrhulipennella another heather feeder, the larva of the Beautiful Yellow Underwing and an adult Beautiful Hook-tip. Although not a moth I also encountered two Corizus hyosyami bugs, this species was new to Lincs. recently but now spreading. The rarest moth encountered (to be verified) was the larval case of a Psychidae species Proutia betulina, this is only found in a few Southern-Eastern counties of Britain and would be a Lincolnshire first and the most northerly British Record - here's hoping!' To end the day I visited Skellingthorpe Woods for a couple of hours with a Mercury Vapour Light and enticed the usual early Spring moths.
- Brian Hedley at Marton had his Actinic Lamp (over Skinner trap). It yielded: 27 moths of 7 species including: 2 Twin-spot Quaker; 3 Red Chestnut; 2 Early Grey & a Powdered Quaker.
- Dave Wright sent in the following: 'Holly Blue this afternoon on the Aylesby Meadows Estate in Grimsby. Other highlights included a Small White on Immingham Dock, Green-veined White nearby in Long Strip Wood and another of the latter along the Humber embankment at Pyewipe, Grimsby.'
- Lesley Robinson saw her first Holly Blue of the year, in her Scunthorpe garden this afternoon.
- Steve Jones in his Sleaford Garden during the afternoon saw 2 Brimstone; 3 Small Tortoiseshell; a Peacock & a Red Admiral. 'Other notables as they were the first I've seen this year were Small White & a Large White (both of which were interested in the Brussel Sprout plants I had just pulled up!! but I did get to see them up close) and a Speckled Wood. A good day's spotting without leaving the garden!'
- Phil Lee and Matt Blissett ran 2 MV and 1 actinic lights at Messingham Sand Quarry between dusk and 22:15 p.m. Phil writes: 'We set up near the car park where there are lots of Sallow blossom hoping for the rare White-marked but without success. The moths we did capture were:- 3 Agonopterix alstromeriana; 2 Clouded Drab; 11 Common Quaker; 7 Early Tooth-striped; 4 Hebrew Character & singletons of Pine Beauty; Powdered Quaker; Red Chestnut; Chestnut; Early Grey; Shoulder Stripe & Small Quaker.'
- Mark Johnson saw 2 Orange Tip butterflies near Dunholme.
- Bernard Featherstone saw the following at Messingham Sand Quarry: 11 Peacock; 4 Brimstone; 2 Comma & one each of Small Tortoiseshell, G V White & Speckled Wood.
- Steve Jones from Sleaford reports: ' ... I have just seen my first sighting this year of a Holly Blue. It was seen in the garden feeding on Rosemary flowers.
- At Thorpe on the Hill: 2 Small White; 3 Small Tortoiseshell; 3 Brimstone and 2 Peacock.
- Priscilla Jayne Kirk e-mailed in: ' ... Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock seen in my garden in Boston today.'
- Derek Fox e-mailed the following: 'First trap of the year at the Foxes garden Langworth, involving Derek & Ron Fox, and Chris Dobson. 28 Moths of 8 species: 14 Hebrew Character; 6 Clouded Drab; 2 Early Grey; 2 Small Quaker & 1 Chestnut. The best of the catch was a Mullein and next best was a Powdered Quaker!'
- Ian McGlynn from Bourne: ' ... just saw first Green Veined White of the year in the garden even though the weather was not particularly brilliant.
- Colin Goulding saw 3 Small Tortoiseshell; 1 Comma & 1 Peacock in his Saxilby garden this morning.
- Alan Dale from Low Hameringham writes: 'I had some trouble with a dark stranger! Visitors to the MV trap were: 7 Clouded Drab; 5 Common Quaker; 3 Hebrew Character; 1 Small Quaker and a Dark stranger!' The latter was probably a rather dark Red Chestnut.
- Hugh Middleton saw: 2 Brimstone; 3 Small Tortoiseshell; 4 Peacock and a Comma at Chambers Farm Wood.
- Dave Wright reports: 'Lots of Peacocks and Small Tortoiseshells along the Humber embankment this afternoon, between Immingham Dock and Grimsby, but the highlight was a Speckled Wood at the Pyewipe Line in Great Coates.'
- Derek Fox saw 2 Small Tortoiseshells; 1 Peacock & a male Brimstone in his Langworth Garden.
- Andy Sims from Swanpool had: 13 moths in his garden trap: 3 Common Quaker; 2 Clouded Drab; 5 Hebrew Character; 2 Early Grey & 1 Pale Mottled Willow (nfy)
- Pete Burnett: 'Took the actinic to our local wood last night ( Fiskerton Wood aka Long Wood ): 45 moths of 10 species; 12 Clouded Drab;12 Engrailed; 5 Twin-spotted Quaker; 4 Common Quaker; 3 Hebrew Character; 2 Pale Pinion; 3 Early Grey; 1 Chestnut; a couple of Diurnea fagella and another micro still awaiting ID.'
- Lawrie Poole had singletons of Brimstone, Peacock and Small Tortoiseshell in his Thorpe on the Hill garden today.
- Lesley Robinson saw the following in her Scunthorpe garden today: 3 male Brimstones, 3 Peacocks, 1 Small Tortoiseshell, 2 Commas and 1 Small White. Well done, Lesley a great set of species!
- Chris Dobson from Langworth also wrote in with the following: ' ... all I seem to be getting are Clouded Drab, Common Quaker, Early Grey & Hebrew Character. I did, however, get an excellent garden bird record on Saturday (3rd April). Imagine my pleasure on opening the curtains and seeing a super Black Redstart on the front lawn! It very soon hopped over on to the road (St. Hugh's Drive) and remained in this area for the next fifteen minutes until flushed by a couple of passing cars. It put in a further five minute appearance at about 6pm in the evening. Unfortunately I have not seen it again.'
- Andy Sims from Swanpool wrote: ' ... just 7 moths in my trap this morning - but 2 new ones for the garden: Water Carpet and Pale Pinion, bringing my garden macro list to 291. Also trapped were: 1 Engrailed (nfy); 2 Common Quaker & 2 Clouded Drab.'
- Graham Taylor at Scotter reports: 'After several single catches of Hebrew Character, last night brought my first variety and id challenges: 1 Hebrew Character; 3 Early Grey and 1 Early Thorn.'
- Phil Lee from Misterton had 9 moths including Agonopterix alstromeriana, which was new for the year & a Herald in mint condition.
- John Spring saw a Brimstone in his Grimsby garden.
- John Davison found 16 March Tubics (Diurea fagella) on tree trunks at Broughton West Wood this afternoon - all male.
- Freddy Johnson had a female Brimstone butterfly and a Small Tortoiseshell in his Bracebridge Heath garden.
- Dave Wright e-mailed: 'Has Spring at last sprung? Sightings from this afternoon in Grimsby are as follows: male Brimstone along Great Coates Road; 4 Small Tortoiseshell at Freshney Bog; 17 Small Tortoiseshell and a single Peacock along the Wybers Wood Estate field margin.'
- Phil Lee writes: ' ... because of forecast rain I only ran my garden trap here in Misterton between dusk and 10:30 p.m. and had just 6 moths: 2 Clouded Drab, 2 Hebrew Character but of note were 1 Oak Beauty and 1 Pine Beauty, both of which are new for my garden which is 4km from the nearest woodland.'
- Maureen & Bernard Featherstone e-mailed the following: 'To-day at Whisby we saw 2 male Brimstone round Teal Lake and 1 Small Tortoiseshell near Grebe Lake. Hopefully this is the first of many, now the weather is improving we hope will enjoy seeing loads more.'
- Hugh Middleton saw 2 Brimstone at Chambers Farm Wood.
1st April: We have been asked to publicise the following: The link to March’s Mothy Mutterings is bit.ly/1C8bf8W There is some good material here, including a list of the moths seen during March. Just for interest, here in Lincs. between us, we have recorded almost all those seen nationally! So that's pretty encouraging. John Petyt's splendid White-pinion Spotted however, stands out as being unique to our County. Well done, John. (See entry for 21st March)
- Andy Sims from Swanpool had 7 moths in his trap: 1 Twin-spotted Quaker (nfy); 3 Common Quaker; 2 Hebrew Character & 1 Chestnut.
- Brian Hedley from Marton found a female Pale Tussock on a log basket inside his house today. Brian writes: 'Maybe the heat of the house has made it emerge a month too early? Fairly crumpled wings unfortunately.'
- Pete Burnett from Fiskerton had his first two moths of the year: an Early Grey and a Clouded Drab. As Pete says: ' ... oh well, it's a start!'
- Alan Dale, from Low Hameringham, had the following moths attracted to the garage window ('suitably illuminated from inside!'): 3 Dotted Border; 2 Shoulder Stripe; 1 Early Moth & 6 Agonopterix heracliana agg .. all before 10 p.m. and then by midnight: 3 Hebrew Character.
- E-mail from John Petyt: 'An interesting record for you of a White-pinion Spotted moth found resting on a tree trunk at Ashbyville reserve Scunthorpe. I found the moth on the 19th March - the usual flight period is May to early July!'
- At his Swanpool home, Andy Sims had: ' ... 12 moths of 5 species last night:1 Oak Beauty; 2 Small Quaker; 5 Common Quaker; 1 Clouded Drab & 3 Hebrew Character'
- Timothy Bagworth writes: ' ... I have finally trapped my first moth at my new home in Spalding last night, a Clouded Drab!' Well done Tim, keep up the good work!
Phil Lee writes: 'I spent today with Charlie Barnes (Lincs beetle recorder) looking for beetles on the banks of the River Idle here in NW Lincs at Haxey Grange. We found the attached caterpillar under loose bark on a riverside Willow. I have gone through my books and it seems to fit well with Small Clouded Brindle, both in appearance and timing, habitat etc.
20th March: the day of the Eclipse & the Spring Equinox! Lots happening in the skies this week!
Also a day for garden sightings! Natalie & George Rutter saw a Peacock sunning itself in their Sloothby garden; Ian McGlynn saw a Brimstone in his at Bourne; Harry Turner saw a Brimstone in his Louth garden; Derek Fox had a Brimstone in his garden at Langworth; Lawrie Poole had a fine male Brimstone in his garden at Thorpe on the Hill and, finally, Mrs. Quesne saw 3 Small Tortoiseshells in her Spalding garden. They were together on the ground, spreading their wings absorbing the warmth.
19th March: Richard Davidson sent in the following: 'The security light near the door into the Education Building at Whisby Nature Park often attracts interesting moths and last Thursday evening was no exception. Only two moths but ones I've not seen before, a Yellow Horned (a Birch specialist) and a Shoulder Stripe.
- The night of the very widespread Aurora Borealis.
- Phil Lee & Ted Sabin trapped at Haxey Turbary LWT reserve. ' ... When we arrived at 6pm it was overcast and a balmy 7 deg.C ( felt warm in shorts!). We lit the light at 18:50 and the skies immediately cleared and by 20:00 the temp had plummeted to 2 deg.C. In that short time we had 12 moths of 9 species:- 1 Agonopterix heracliana; 1 Diurnea fagella; 2 Chestnut; 1 Clouded Drab; 1 Common Quaker; 1 Dotted Border; 1 Hebrew Character; 3 March Moth; 1 Pine Beauty and 2 pairs of Tawny Owls nearby, which never stopped calling!'
- Lawrie Poole, just for the record, had 2 Clouded Drab & 4 Common Quaker at Thorpe on the Hill.
- Dave Wright e-mailed: ' ... despite the cold breeze along the coast today, managed to see my first butterflies of the year: 2 Small Tortoiseshells on the sheltered bank of Buck Beck in Cleethorpes.'
- Chris Dobson from Langworth wrote: ' ... just getting going again but so far only had Common Quaker, Hebrew Character and Clouded Drab.'
- Whilst looking for Beetles with Charlie Barnes, John Petyt, Keith Scarrott & John Davison came across an Orange Underwing on Yarborough Warren, Scunthorpe.
- Hugh Middleton saw a Brimstone butterfly at Snakeholme Pit this afternoon.
- Colin Watkin, at his Treswell home, near Rampton, trapped 2 Clouded Drab; 6 Hebrew Character, ' ... and a rather nice Shoulder Stripe.' He also had 4 Agonopterix agg. and an Acleris hastiana on a window on 11th March.
12th March: Michael Barke saw 2 Small Tortoiseshell butterflies in a Gainsborough garden, near an Oak wood.
11th March: Andy Sims at Swanpool had 7 moths of 4 species: 3 Common Quaker; 1 Clouded Drab; 2 Hebrew Character & 1 Early Grey.
- Colin Goulding saw a Small Tortoiseshell on Heather plants in his Saxilby garden, today, at about 3pm.
- Ian McGlynn wrote: ' ... season has started! I have just seen my first butterfly, in the garden (Bourne), a Comma. Mind you Jeannie saw another Small Tortoiseshell!'
- Phil and Val Emmett sent in the following: ' ... you may be interested to know that we saw 2 Small Tortoiseshell butterflies (Aglais urticae) on the bank of the South Delph Drain, about 0.75km east from Five Mile Bridge, Fiskerton this afternoon as we walked along there.'
- Richard Fox sent in this 'Tweet' today: 2 post-hibernation Scarce Tortoiseshell reported in Netherlands! Keep eyes peeled! Interesting observation bearing in mind the sightings several of us had last July. So let's keep a look out!
- Also on Twitter, Richard Lewington posted the image here of several drawings he has done of some of his favourite moths from 2014. What a brilliant illustrator he is.
- Also today, our Twitter Followers totalled 200 - quite a nice milestone! Thanks to Katie Callaghan at BC HQ for sorting us out & getting us up & running last November.
- Peter Cawdell saw his first butterfly of the year: a male Brimstone on Glebe Park, Lincoln.
- Michael Barke saw a Comma and a Peacock in a Gainsborough garden, near an Oak wood, and a Small Tortoiseshell in a Gainsborough town garden.
- With the feel of a Spring-like day and temperatures soaring(!) to 16+ deg C, Mark Johnson spotted a Brimstone butterfly at Riseholme Hall.
- Jeannie McGlynn had a Small Tortoiseshell in her Bourne garden.
- 3 Small Tortoiseshell butterflies were seen by Mrs. Quesne in her Spalding garden. They were settling, either on the ground, spreading their wings out, or wishfully thinking, on a Buddleia for nectar!
- Patsy Jolly, from Thorpe on the Hill, saw a Brimstone in her garden - she thought it may have come out from the Ivy.
- Pete Smith wrote in: ' ... Just had my first butterfly sightings of 2015 (I haven't been out much lately!) during a lovely visit to Potterhanworth Wood today. Unusually, my first butterfly of the year was a Red Admiral, flying along the main ride through the wood. This was almost certainly a successful hibernator, as it is a little early to be anticipating migrants just yet. I also saw a couple of Brimstones and a Small Tortoiseshell.Spring is just around the corner!'
- Brian Hedley at Marton had a 15w Actinic over Skinner trap out and trapped six moths of five species: 2 Common Quaker; and singletons of Oak Beauty; Pale Brindled Beauty; Chestnut and Agonopterix ocellana. Brian also released a 'fluttering' Peacock butterfly from his garage.
- Phil Lee had five moths at his Misterton home: 3 Common Quaker; a Dotted Border - this time it was actually in the trap! - and a Satellite, with the white markings.
Notice: Peter Cawdell sent in the following:
"We have had the new panel sign approved by the Forestry Commission and it is now being produced. It will be erected at the start of 'our' Coppice area and will no doubt be appreciated by those visiting who have not been quite sure where the Coppice area actually is! I hope you agree it looks very good and the simple but informative wording should be a good advert for our Branch ... and all the hard work of our volunteers over many years."
- John Badley saw a Peacock butterfly today in his Frampton garden.
- Phil Lee from his Misterton home, on the edge of the Isle of Axholme, ' ... put the MV trap out in the garden last night, and had 6 moths of 6 species:- Common Quaker; Dotted Border (as usual just outside the trap!); Grey Shoulder-knot; Hebrew Character; Common Plume (like yours Graham) & a Beautiful Plume.'
- Graham Taylor from Scotter, North of Gainsborough writes: ' ... as the ‘newbie’ to the group and a raw beginner I thought
- I’d share my first trapping attempts of the year, albeit that they appear to be nothing out of the ordinary. I put the trap, self-built incorporating a ‘Prolite’ 11W UV bulb, out in my back garden last night. I didn’t expect much, if anything, but was pleasantly surprised to find two moths: a Hebrew Character and a Common Plume moth, (Emmelina monodactyla)'
- Lawrie Poole at Thorpe on the Hill trapped another singleton moth last night, this time a Satellite - with the orange-brown 'satellite' markings.
1st March: Alan Dale from Low Hameringham had 2 Agonopterix heracliana ... on the garage window! In ones & twos (apart from Isle of Axeholme group, who seem to be doing rather better!), we are reeling them in!
27th February: Another ... just a single moth! This time from Colin Watkin at his Treswell (nr. Rampton) home: a single Hebrew Character. Colin's comment: ' ... it must be hot in the Isle of Axholme!'
27th February: Just a single moth - first of the year too - for Lawrie Poole at Thorpe on the Hill: a Dark Chestnut; ' ... a nice, patterned, chocolate colour and quite shiny.'
26th February: Brian Hedley from Marton: ' ... had my actinic trap out in the garden all last night and not a single moth noted!'
26th February: Andy Sims had his light out at his Swanpool home and caught: 1 Spring Usher; 1 Dotted Border & 1 Chestnut.
26th February: Matt Blissett, Ted Sabin and Phil Lee (the Axholme Three!) ran 2MV and 1 actinic lights last night for a couple of hours in Epworth Turbary and had a total of 47 moths. Results were:- Micros:- 14 Tortricodes alternella; 1 Agonopterix alstromeriana (new for year). Macros:- 7 Chestnut; 4 Dotted Border; 6 March Moth; 14 Pale Brindled Beauty (1 monacharia) & 1 Satellite (new for year). On the other hand, Brian Hedley, at his Marton home: ' ... had my actinic trap out in garden all last night and not a single moth noted!'
19th February: Ted Sabin and Phil Lee ran an MV & an Actinic lamp for a couple of hours in Langholme Wood LWT NR last night in the Isle of Axholme. It was a bumper night with moths arriving in squadrons from all directions. The results were:- Micros:- 20+ Tortricodes alternella; 2 Acleris ferrugana/notana Macros:- 10+ March Moth; 20+ Dotted Border; 20+ Pale-brindled Beauty (3 monacharia); 1 Common Quaker; 3 Chestnut; 1 Spring Usher; 1 Red Sword-grass Butterflies:- 1 Comma!
Phil writes: ' ... the Red Sword-grass flew into my face and then dropped onto the sheet (probably stunned by my beauty!) The Comma butterfly was on a Birch trunk.'
18th February: Pam Loxley saw a Small Tortoiseshell butterfly in her Barrow-upon-Humber garden in the afternoon: '... so Spring must be on the way!'
17th February: Pam Loxley of Barrow-upon-Humber ' ... had a Small White butterfly flying around my kitchen. I am guessing that it came into the house as a caterpillar rather than in its present form as I have never seen one this early before. The butterfly really wasn`t as yellow as it looks in the photo.' The books say: that after a mild winter, the first adults are seen as early as February, although April is more usual. The MET Office are saying that we have just had the sunniest winter on record. (Incidentally, the Loxleys entitled the photo on the left 'The Epitome of Optimism!')
15th February: At Messingham Sand Quarry LWT NR, Matt Blissett, Ted Sabin and Phil Lee (John Davison & John Petyt came later)
spent two and a half chilly hours at Messingham Sand Quarry LWT NR running 2 MV lights and 1 Actinic. Phil writes: ' ... we had 9 macros and one micro: a Chestnut found by torch on Oak trunk; a Pale-brindled Beauty came to light; 3 Spring Usher - 1 to light and 2 netted flying over or around light; 4 Dotted Border, 3 of which came towards the light but then sat on twig ends close by and 1 found on Hawthorn twig well away from light. The micro was an Acleris logiana (now seems to be found in most local Birch woods) found by torch on a Birch trunk.' John Davison tells us that interestingly, the Acleris logiana is a new MSQ reserve record, and the Pale-brindled Beauty, Spring Usher & Dotted Border had not been recorded there since 1985.
14th February: Colin Watkin had the first moths of the year in his Treswell (nr Rampton) garden. Colin writes: ' ... If you are a beginner to moth trapping, then don't assume that all moths fly into the trap! A Dotted Border settled on the shed wall and a Grey Shoulder-knot was on the wooden door frame. Only a Red-green Carpet was in the trap. So look around on vegetation, tree trunks, walls, posts etc. Yesterday, I watched a Wren struggling to eat a large juicy green caterpillar. Kept bashing it on the head to kill it. Suspect that was an Angle Shades.'
12th February: There has been some 'Twitter' chat recently about how UK butterflies overwinter. A bit of counting up revealed the following figures: 9 UK butterflies overwinter as an egg; 31 as a larva; 11 as a chrysalis and 6 as an actual butterfly (this includes the Clouded Yellow and Red Admiral - both of which hibernate in small numbers.) The Speckled Wood overwinters as either a larva or a chrysalis which leads to the more complicated sequence of adult broods and emergence dates.
There seem to be anomalies. The Green Hairstreak overwinters as a chrysalis; whilst the other 4 Hairstreaks (Brown, Purple, White-lettered & Black) overwinter in the egg form. The Blues are even more varied. The Silver-studded and Chalkhill overwinter as eggs; Small, Common, Adonis and Large overwinter as larva and the Holly Blue as a chrysalis. Interesting stuff!
8th February: A sunny day, and slightly higher temperatures resulted in Lesley & Howard Robinson at their Scunthorpe home seeing ' ... our first butterfly of the year this afternoon in the garden - a Peacock.'
8th February: There is not much to report at the moment, so how about this stunning, Shining Purple Wing butterfly to brighten up the proceedings! It comes from Costa Rica, and was posted recently on the 'Twitter' account of Dr. Martin Warren, our Butterfly Conservation Chief Executive.
31st January: Martin Gray e-mailed an amazing story. Peter Aldridge from Algarkirk, near Boston found a large caterpillar on 20th November 2014. He reared it, bred it through, and it finally emerged as an adult moth on 13th January this year: a beautiful Death's Head Hawkmoth!
25th January: Phil Lee was at Haxey Turbary LWT reserve and found 8 moths: 2 Chestnut, 5 Pale Brindled Beauty and 1 micro: an Acleris hastiana. Sarah & Karen Hand tell us that the Acleris h. hibernates as an adult and is fairly common in the winter months. It is such a variable moth and there are many different colour forms.
21st January: Matt Blissett photographed this Drinker Moth caterpillar at Scotton today - "it had probably moved up out of the frost."
18th January: Richard Davidson spotted a Small Tortoiseshell in the Butterfly Garden at Chambers Farm Wood. It was around mid-day time, when it was a little warmer in the sunshine.
17th January: Alan Dale wrote in from his home in Low Hameringham: ' ... first of the year, first for the garden, first ever! For several years I've lamped Hawthorn and Blackthorn hedges hoping to find a flightless female. That's the sort of statement that could land one in trouble! Around mid-day, on a sunlit garage wall, under a Horse Chestnut tree and within 4 metres of a Blackthorn hedge, there she was. What I fondly imagine to be a female Winter Moth. A bit late in the season for her to be out and about and surprisingly active - but, attracting no male company when left out at night. Male numbers peaked in early December.'
12th January: Harry Turner, at his Louth home, saw a Peacock butterfly ' ... flying strongly in the garden'. (Quite an overcast morning with temperatures just into double figures.)
8th January: Colin Green reported: ' ... this afternoon in my garden in North Hykeham, was a Peacock butterfly.'
6th January: Roy Harvey, at his Barnetby home, ' ... had this Pale Brindled Beauty on our kitchen window last night.'
6th January: Here is an update, showing for the full year of 2014 the MET Office's Temperature Anomalies Chart, month by month. It shows the deviations of the 2014 monthly average temperatures from the 1961-1990 averages. Dr. Martin Warren, our BC CEO, first spotted this chart a couple of months ago. With the full year now published, it shows just one month, August, when the average temperature was less than the standard. Even for December, the average temperature was up by nearly a degree from the standard. As has been said before, no wonder we had good sightings for 2014!
4th January: Tim Bagworth at his new Spalding home has kicked off the New Year with a sighting of a Large Pale Clothes Moth. Look out for your woolly jumpers Tim!
2nd January: Phil Lee saw the first Lincs. butterfly of the year and sent in this comment: ' ... saw a Peacock butterfly today 'fighting the wind' at Bird's Wood LWT NR near Westwoodside, my earliest ever butterfly sighting, hope this is a good omen for the year!' (Nationally, a Peacock was seen in Norfolk on 1st January, and Red Admirals were seen in Devon and Surrey also on 1st January - from BC's First Sightings page.)
1st January: Andy Sims at Swanpool saw the first Lincs. moth of the year: ' ... I was surprised to find this Angle Shades on the wall by our outside light this morning.'
See some of the more noteworthy sightings from 2014