Since my last post we've had a lot of dry weather but with cold nights and low numbers in the trap. However, the micro Caloptilia semifascia was new for the garden list. Acleris cristana was my 4th garden record and The Streamer is always a nice one to get in the trap. Year list now 20.
With the improved weather the last few days moth trapping has improved withthe following usual spring species turning up in the trap: D. fagella, Small Quaker, Early Thorn, Early Grey, Twin-spotted Quaker, The Chestnut and a Dotted Border. Year list 12. I did manage to see the 2 Short-eared owls at Oare
yesterday but they remained firmly on the ground. Nearby a Little Egret
looked good in breeding plumage in the sun.
I have managed to put the trap out on a couple of nights when it wasn't too wet or windy or both, and so far I've had 2 Hebrew Characters, 2 Common Quakers and 1 Clouded Drab. Additionally I found a Dotted Border on the front door after dark this week so that's 5 species so far this year. A couple of visits to Dungeness haven't produced a lot to report, failing to see either of the "White-winged" Gulls that have been reported recently. I did see the drake Smew distantly, the Firecrest on the reserve and there are a few Chiffchaffs wintering. There has been a wreck of sea creatures on the shore, which seem to be mainly Squid, Starfish and Sea Mice. We did note a dozen Mediterranean Gulls and a few Kittiwakes coming close to the shore.
Still raining. The first moth record of the year was on 4th January when I found 3 wings of a Winter Moth on a window sill at the back of the house. In the Dungeness area on the 3rd January we saw 28 Bewisk's Swans on Walland Marsh, 2 Long-tailed Ducks on Scotney and a Shoret-eared Owl at Galloways. On 7th January I saw a Mediterranean Gull at hampton Pier, Herne Bay, and a Purple Sandpiper, which had a damaged bill and some line attached to one leg. this kind of thing seems more common lately.
Well we've reached the end of another year with no moths recorded in December, and not many birds seen either in the month. In 2019 I recorded 343 moth species in the garden which is 54 down on last year's 397. However, there were still 15 species for the garden list. I had bee half expecting to get Jersey Tiger and Clancy's Rustic at some point as these 2 species have been expanding their range for some time. On the other hand Jersey Mocha was completely unexpected and Pale-lemon Sallow was quite a surprise too. Below are a few of these new species for the garden-I wonder what will be new in 2020.
I haven't had much to report lately with the nights being either too cold or too wet for any moths to reach the trap, while the weather has not encouraged me out into the field much. At Dungeness on Thursday it stayed dry but the was not much to report. The highlight was around 20+ Mediteranean Gulls at the patch with one also at the Fishing Boat puddles with Black-headed Gulls. Around the reserve 1 Cattle Egret, 2/3 Great White Egrets, and a Little Egret were noted. Kingfishers were heard on a couple of occasions but not seen.