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saving butterflies, moths and our environment
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Workshop: Introduction to Moths and Moth Trapping
Strontian, Ardnamurchan
, Saturday 24 March 2012

The main aim of this event was to increase and encourage moth recording in the Ardnamurchan area, a very under recorded part of the HIghlands. When the date for this event was set, several months in advance, it was felt unlikely there would be many, if any, moths to be seen. However, the emphasis of the event was to provide an introduction to moths at the start of the season and how to attract and record them. If we found any moths on the day it would be a bonus!

14 people attended this event on a glorious day – it was far too nice to be inside – it even included a contingent of three who had come across from Mull. After a general introduction about moths and moth trapping the contents of three moth traps that had been set locally overnight were inspected. Fortunately it had been an ideal moth night and there were literally hundreds of moths to be seen of a remarkable 22 different species. See the species lists below for the catch from each site. The moth highlights included the usual crowd pleaser of Red Sword-grass but also lovely fresh Early Greys and fantastic Oak Beautys.

Despite plenty of moths, tea, coffee and biscuits the highlight of the day was undoubtedly the Carrot Cake - unfortunately it did not last long enough for any photos to be taken! The cake was originally intended for the local Yoga group but luckily for us their meeting had been cancelled at the last minute. Not wanting to see the cake go to waste and the cake bearer take it home one of our party, who shall remain nameless, didn’t let it out of her sight and by sweet talking, or perhaps using more strong-arm tactics, persuaded the baker that our needs were the greater.

Excitingly the day after the event Jayne and Andrew Theaker who attended the moth day found a female Belted Beauty near Ardnamurchan Point, a new site for this very rare moth which along with a nearby site at Sanna are its only known locations on the Scottish mainland.

The workshop was part-funded and run in partnership with West Highland College UHI and Highland Council.

The Sunart Centre, part of Ardnamurchan High School, was an excellent venue and particular thanks must be extended to the very helpful janitor.

Further pictures of some of the moths caught on the night along with the Ardnamuchan Belted Beauty can be found on the Mingarry Lodge Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.275238089169330.84662.121475057878968&type=3

Oak Beauty (T Prescott)

Oak Beauty (Tom Prescott)

Twin_spotted Quaker (T Prescott)

Twin-spotted Quaker (Tom Prescott)



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