Moth trapping and small mammal hunt....



Elephant Hawkmoth 

Saturday was a trip to Rodley Nature reserve 

They were were going to open up, what turned out to be three moth traps that they had placed round the reserve. The weather had not been the best so it was not over busy which meant you got to see all the moths they had caught, three very knowledgeable people opened a trap at a time one recording for the site. 
The lady in the bottom photo was very nice and new her stuff , they got the children involved and were quite happy for people to hold the moths, even if one or two did not  make it through the day.
It was wonderful to see so many moths as I have had none in my home made trap this year. 
All you "mothy" people out there would have loved it, there was a lot to take in and I hope I have got the names right of the few I've shown you.
The day was humid and you should have seen the amount of midges that came piling out of the egg boxes, they were starting to bite by 9.30 !



White Ermine

Ghost moth


There were male and female Ghost moths in the traps, the lady explained they have been finding a lot of wings on the ground near the traps and think the bats have been picking them of, even with them not trapping every night and moving the traps to a different location.
There is a few more moth trapping events coming up but all so a bat walk which I quite fancy, will need my midge spray for that.
Silver Y





Elephant Hawkmoth 

Poplar Hawkmoth



After two traps and interest dwindling a little they moved on to the mammals, same again they had put humane traps down round the headquarters. We had mice, and field voles in the traps. Water voles are on the reserve but up till now have not been trapped. 
I did see a squirrel, rat on the feeders and at the start of the day a deer was down on the bottom field. Did not count as small mammal....!


A walk round the reserve just showed how much work and effort the team that works here have done, the wild flower meadows were stunning.






This flower is Goat's beard, a bit like a Dandelion but grander, looking good from closed bud to seed head.  






This fancy trap was placed near the Dragonfly ponds, the insect hits the black netting flies up into the white area, there is a collecting tub at the top.

By now I was been eaten alive !!!!!

This Little Grebe was eating a male Stickleback, you can just make out the red belly of the fish, well it was not for going down and gave up in the end. Not sure if the fish strived. 

Last year on the first lagoon at the far side they build this for the Sand martins, you can see by all the holes how well it is been used. there was a telescope set up so you could have a better look and you could see the three Tern chicks on their floating home on the water. It was raining at this point and I could not stand the midges no more,
there was events on all day.




Later that day the sun came out and I watched the bees for a while.



This one was frog hopping !!!



I had my first butterfly in the garden to day as well...

Speckled Wood 
(Pararge aegeria)







Comments

  1. Nice post Amanda, great photos.

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  2. What a superb place! So glad you got to see all the moths xx

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    1. Thanks CT, glad you like the moths..
      Amanda xx

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  3. Those moths are amazing. I love the ermine moth - it looks like it's wearing a fancy cloak! Thanks for the ID of the Goats Beard too - I photographed one recently but hadn't worked out what it was yet :-) Great place to visit. x

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    1. Thanks Julie, It was great to see all the moths, and Goat's Beard is such a nice wild flower, I had a look and ordered some seeds to have a go at growing it...
      Amanda xx

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  4. Great post Amanda with some lovely photos. It sounds like a super event - I used to love going on Moth Nights and Bat Walks when the children were younger. You get the chance to see so many moths you would never trap at home and it was these events that led to me eventually getting my own trap. You have my sympathies about the midges - last time I went to a moth night at Ladywalk NR there were biting insects everywhere and I was covered in bites afterwards. I could even understand why one of the ladies there was wearing a hat and veil!!!!! which had seemed rather strange at the time!! :)

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    1. Thanks RR, it was a good event and will probably go to the next one, if I lived that little bit closer I would become a volunteer at this place. Have some midge spray, so must remember to use it next time.
      Amanda xx

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  5. Oh, what lovely moths! I don't know my moths very well, but they are fascinating. We have Goats Beard at our cottage, and the seedheads amaze me. They're very photogenic. Sounds like a wonderful place and a wonderful event! Love the capture of the frog-hopping bee!

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    1. Thanks PP, they have so many fancy names and come in all shapes and sizes, so you can see why people like moth trapping.
      Very understated is the Goat's beard plant and would sell like the foxglove in garden centres, have bought some seeds to plant for next year.
      Amanda xx

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  6. What spectacular sights and so good to see the good work going on there.

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    1. Thanks Jennifer, a lot of people work very hard not just here but all over, which is good as we would not have these beautiful places to visit. And wild life would suffer...
      Amanda xx

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  7. Fabulous moth post.
    Elephant hawk moths are frequent visitor to the garden.....I have their host plant in place, also honeysuckle to feed from.
    Beautiful moths......

    I love Goat's beard. The verges along the lane are full of them this year. I love the seed heads. I tried to grow them in the garden several times, without success. They just disappear.............

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    1. Thanks Cheryl, thanks for the information on host plant of the Elephant Hawk moth, have some honeysuckle growing and had a look they like fuchsias so will get some of these too.
      Interesting what you have said about the Goat's beard plant as well, sent for some seed so will let you know how I get on .
      Amanda xx

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  8. Very interesting B and W shot of the Speckled Wood Amanda. Brilliant.

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  9. wonderful wonderful! except for the midges, what lovely creatures. don't think i've ever seen such beautiful moths either. i have a new respect for them (as long as they steer clear of my yarn).
    and yay to wild flower meadows

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    1. Thanks Autumn, a few years back I don't think I would have been holding moths in my had, but have come to love them, like all the different names they have.
      Amanda xx

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  10. Interesting to see the variety of moths Amanda, there are some real beauties amongst them, though I am glad to say I can enjoy them without being bitten by midges at the same time!

    Hope you are well and kindest regards :-)

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    1. Thanks David, not catching any at home, even though I can see them flying about !!! so It was nice to get close up to these wonderful moths.
      Amanda xx

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  11. What a wonderful place, and great they have these opportunities for the public to get involved and learn like this! Envious of the Elephant Hawkmoth as I've wanted to see one for years. Don't envy you the midges though. Next time lots of insect repellent! :-) xx

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    1. Thanks Mandy, I felt very lucky to hold the moths, and hope to go to the next event with plenty of insect repellent..
      Amanda xx

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  12. The moths are amazing! I wish I could see some beautiful moths-I only ever see pesky clothing moths!x

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    1. Thanks Kezzie , the Elephant Hawk moth was my favourite thing of the day to see, I did find it a little creepy on my hand though ..
      Amanda xx

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