Butterfly Conservation - saving butterflies, moths and our environment
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saving butterflies, moths and our environment
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Moths of the month: August 2009

This is a monthly series illustrating several characteristic moths to look out for in our area. Text and photos by Roy Leverton.

You can also view the other months by selecting the links at the bottom of this page.

   
July Highflyer, Hydriomena furcata (photo by Roy Leverton) 

July Highflyer Hydriomena furcata

Late July to late September, even into October.

Woodland, carr, moorland.

July Highflyer is misnamed in Scotland, where its main flight time is later. This is an abundant and infinitely variable species with two ecological races. One feeds on sallow and the moths are generally some shade of green, whereas moths of the bilberry race (illustrated) are often reddish. Though nocturnal, they are very easily disturbed by day.

Click on the image to enlarge it.


Autumnal Rustic, Eugnorisma glareosa (photo by Roy Leverton)

Autumnal Rustic Eugnorisma glareosa

Mid August into September.

Moorland, grassland and other open habitats.

Scottish summers are short: by August the first signs of autumn are already appearing. Autumnal Rustic, as its name suggests, marks the changing of the seasons. Its pale wings show up well in torchlight as it feeds at heather blossom.

Click on the image to enlarge it.


Blue-bordered Carpet, Plemyria rubiginata (photo by Roy Leverton)

Blue-bordered Carpet Plemyria rubiginata

August into September.

Woodland edge, carr and scrub.

In Scotland this pretty little moth is mainly associated with alder. It rests openly on foliage by day, perhaps mimicking a bird-dropping. Males are on the wing in early evening, long before sunset. They may be seen flying actively along the sheltered edge of alder clumps, often at canopy level.

Click on the image to enlarge it.


The Sallow, Xanthia icteritia (photo by Roy Leverton)

The Sallow Xanthia icteritia

August and September.

Wooldland, scrub and carr.

Like most autumn moths, the Sallow emerges about a month earlier in our area than it does further south. Its name reflects both the moth's colour (a match for yellowing leaves) and its foodplant. The overwintering eggs are laid on buds that will produce catkins in the spring, nutritious food for the young caterpillar.

Click on the image to enlarge it.


Hworth's Minor, Celaena haworthii (photo by Roy Leverton)

Haworth's Minor Celaena haworthii

August and September.

Boggy moorland, mires and marshes.

This stocky little noctuid is largely a northern species in Britain. It is one of the characteristic moths of habitats with cottongrass and other sedges, the larval foodplants. The adults are partly diurnal and may be seen flying rapidly over moorland on warm afternoons or nectaring on ragwort and heather flowers.

Click on the image to enlarge it


View other months

January - February

March

April

October

November - December

2008: May | June | July | August | September

2009: May | June | July | August | September

2010: May | June | July | August | September

2011: May | June | July | August | September

2012: May | June | July | August | September

2013: May | June | July | August | September

2014: May | June | July | August | September

2015: May | June | July | August | September

2016: May | June | July | August | September

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