Thursday 2 July 2015

Merthyr Mawr NNR

Like others, I couldn't resist trapping on Tuesday night - one of the warmest nights I can remember. I have permission this year to run actinics at Merthyr Mawr NNR, but hadn't found the time until this week. I lugged a 15W actinic about a mile into the dunes from the Newton end, finding a nice sheltered hollow out of the easterly breeze at SS850770. I stayed most of the night, by which time around 77 species had been recorded (about half each of micro and macro moths - these actinics are really good for micros, especially with a white sheet beneath so you can spot the tiny ones that don't enter the trap).

Highlights among the macros were two each of Shore Wainscot and Reddish Light Arches. Both are new for SS87, which shows how little trapping has been done at Merthyr Mawr compared with Kenfig and the Gower dunes, where both of these species are well known.

Reddish Light Arches
Shore Wainscot
Other macros included Scallop Shell (2), Barred Yellow (4), Small Seraphim (3), Haworth's Pug (2), Double Line, Brussels Lace (2), Small Purple-barred, Pretty Chalk Carpet, Vapourer and Blackneck.

The micros were just as good and included the 3rd county record of Sophronia semicostella (the previous two being near Merthyr Tydfil). Others included Acleris bergmanniana, A. schalleriana, Apotomis turbidana, Hedya ochroleucana, Pyrausta ostrinalis, P. cingulata, Mompha ochraceella, Stenoptilia pterodactyla, Eucosma campoliliana, Delplanqueia dilutella, Argyresthia retinella, Stigmella hybnerella and Grapholita janthinana.
Delplanqueia dilutella
Sophronia semicostella
I spent all of yesterday evening going through a pile of micro queries and still have some unresolved - will blog separately about these.



  1. Also of note - at dusk the dunes were swarming with Crescent Plume, Marasmarcha lunaedactyla. Every Rest Harrow plant was covered in them - there must have been tens of thousands on the wing across the dune system.

  2. Great effort George, some excellent records. I agree with your Falseuncaria btw and the Mompha thing reminds me of Blastobasis rebeli (though I don't think it is) - don't the antennae look odd!