Latest News & Sightings

Mains of Cairnbrock Field Meeting 25-26 July 2014

posted 4 Aug 2014, 01:37 by Keith Naylor

The Grey Daggers local moth group carried out intensive trapping at this site in the North Rhins (NW96) to improve the count of macro moths for the forthcoming atlas. Two Skinners and a Heath trap were set in a valley of fen and willow with an adjacent small copse, also, a Robinson and four Heath traps were set in the coastal scrub.
A new micro moth for Wigtownshire (VC74) was trapped, Eudonia pallida, one of the grass moths. Also in good numbers was Pyrausta despicata. Macro moth highlights included three Chevron, six Barred Rivulet, a Treble Bar, nine Annulet, four Haworth's Minor, two Pod Lover, Dark Spectacle and a couple of Buff Footman.
Just over 1600 moths were trapped, recording taking from 09:30 to 17:00 hours with a couple of small breaks in between, but it proved successful with fifty new macros being added for the 10km square.

Scottish Entomologists' Gathering 27-29 June 2014

posted 23 Jul 2014, 00:40 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 4 Aug 2014, 01:20 ]

The Scottish Entomologists' Gathering was held at Caerlaverock WWT during 27-29 June 2014. A number of traps were set up on the 27th around the site and produced Lesser Cream Wave, Tawny-barred Angle of the form nigrofulvata, Round-winged Muslin, Dog's Tooth and Southern Wainscot. Further trapping through the night at the National Nature Reserve next door returned at least 200 Dog's Tooth, Small Clouded Brindle, Southern Wainscot, Saxon, Valerian Pug, Gold Swift, Pinion-streaked Snout and Satin Beauty being the pick. Trapping was also carried out in Mabie Forest, the highlights being a handful of Plain Wave, one Lilac Beauty and three Grey Arches.
Daytime searches were carried out by a number of entomologists', but this data has still to come in.

Dormont Lake Field Meeting 4th July 2014

posted 4 Jul 2014, 23:57 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 4 Aug 2014, 01:38 ]

The local moth group the 'Grey Daggers' held a field meeting at Dormont Lake (NY109754) just north of Dalton in Dumfriesshire on 4th July 2014. One Robinson MV trap, two Skinner MVs and six Heath traps were set up the previous night around the lake and adjacent area. The night was blustery and with rain predicted through the night and all day on the 4th we weren't sure if our effort would be rewarded. To our surprise the catch was extremely good with just over 80 species including about twenty micros, some of which are still to be decided. Pride of place must surely go to Southern Wainscot with one being caught by the fen. This is a good 10 km North of the coast and our first inland record. Apart from the usual suspects there were three Buff Footman, three Slender Brindle, a few of the lovely Peach Blossom, Large Emerald, Marsh Oblique-barred, Miller, Dot Moth, a female Ghost Moth, Swallow-tailed Moth and a couple of Grey Dagger. Micros included a female Bee Moth and a number of Clepsis spectrana as well as more commoner ones. The 10 km square of NY17 can now boast 120 macros.

New Checklist of Moths for Dumfries & Galloway

posted 19 Mar 2014, 10:06 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 2 Jul 2014, 12:13 ]

The second edition of the 'Checklist of Moths for Dumfries & Galloway' has been published in March 2014 and is available to download in pdf format here. Inside this 2nd edition we have adopted the new taxonomic order and renumbering of species that is published in the 'Checklist of the Lepidoptera of the British Isles' by Agassiz, Beavan & Heckford (2013) known as ABH.

Since the 1st edition was published in 2011, we have discovered a fine collection of specimens in the National Museums of Scotland, resulting in over 5,000 more records and some new species and validation of others. And, during this intervening period, we are discovering mainly new micro moths each year as observers interest grows, plus the occasional new macro, as per the Devon Carpet recently. All of this has increased our knowledge of the species in Dumfries & Galloway.

2013 Review

posted 14 Jan 2014, 10:56 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 15 Jan 2014, 00:28 ]

Highlight of the year was the finding of six Devon Carpets at Glassoch Farm, Wigtownshire, a new species for Scotland, and a further five records of Dingy Footman adding to the one in 2011, also, the only records for Scotland. The latter is probably being overlooked or confused with the Buff Footman, but the curved costa on the Dingy Footman should alert observers.

Regards micro-moths there were five new ones to Dumfries & Galloway: - 0115 Stigmella alnetella, 0602 Elachista apicipunctella, 0631 Elachista freyerella, 0981 Archips rosana and 1099 Endothenia marginana. Including those five, they amounted to 28 micros being new for our vice counties.

Now is the time to forward those moth records which have to be verified by the County Moth Recorder and the macro portion forwarded to NMRS so that Butterfly Conservation can add them to the national database ready for the annual update of the NBN web site for mapping purposes by the end of March. The micro moth records are sent to various recording schemes with the new vice-county records being published in the 'Entomologists' Record.'

A second edition of our 'Checklist' is under way and should be available this March as a pdf file or as a ring-bound hard copy for a nominal fee of a few pounds.

Finally, the 2014 'Grey Daggers' moth group draft programme is available under Resources.

New photo archive for VCs 72-74

posted 14 Sept 2013, 00:27 by Keith Naylor

Due to Yahoo changing the way photos were stored in the archive on the East of Scotland web site, it has now become impossible for Mark Cubitt to back these up, so an alternative has been found at

Here you can see our archive of moths seen in VCs72-74 and it can be used as a preliminary tool for identification of micros.

Just like buses ...

posted 27 Aug 2013, 11:06 by Keith Naylor

Twelve days later along comes another first for Scotland. This time five Devon Carpets were trapped at Glassoch, Wigtownshire on 26th August 2013 during a Bioblitz event. An earlier record from Arran has been rejected on the grounds of probable midentification.

First for Scotland

posted 18 Aug 2013, 01:42 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 18 Aug 2013, 06:49 ]

Alison Robertson noticed a moth at the window at The Crichton, Dumfries, on the 14th August 2013, and found it to be an unfamiliar micro moth, so she took a photo and researched it. It looked very similar to some photos on the internet of Acrolepia autumnitella, a species mainly in the south and Midlands of England. This was perplexing. However, two days later, armed with knowledge of its foodplant, Alison checked for Bittersweet at The Crichton and found four leaves with tenanted mines and took photos. See species account.

The selection of photos were sent to Mark Young, keeper of the Scottish micro moth list who confirmed its identity and the fact that it was new to Scotland.

As you will recall the foremost lepidopterist of our Region, William Lennon, who worked at The Crichton when it was a Sanitorium, also caught a first for Scotland on 6th September 1865. He noticed a strange micro moth on the outside of a window, but he was on the inside, and to obtain it he broke the glass and caught it. It turned out to be Euchromius ocellea, the first for Scotland and only the third for Britain. H. G. Knaggs, the editor of the Ent. Mon. Mag. (vol. iii. 139) took it the British Museum and compared it with the only known specimen there. The other was caught in Glamorganshire in 1862.

So lightning does strike twice!

Updated moth recording spreadsheet for 2013

posted 18 Dec 2012, 03:39 by Mark Pollitt - SWSEIC

The County Moth Recorder and DGERC have updated the moth recording spreadsheet which is the preferred way to send in moth records. This includes some additions to lookup values and makes one or two other minor alterations. Using this spreadsheet helps to make the process of getting your records onto the county database a quick and efficient as possible, so please do use it for typing up your records. You can download the latest version from the Resources page.

Online recording
Some wildlife recorders will have noticed that there have been some recent steps in creating systems for submitting all sorts of wildlife records online. New developments such as iRecord are very exciting and may offer great opportunities in future, but at present the preferred system is to submit all records to the County Moth Recorder (or via DGERC who will pass them straight on). We will look at these new opportunities as they develop and mature, and make use of them where and when we can.

2012 Highlights

posted 26 Sept 2012, 11:02 by Keith Naylor   [ updated 18 Dec 2012, 03:28 by Mark Pollitt - SWSEIC ]

During 2012 in Dumfries & Galloway we have had two new macro moths this year: Bordered Grey found in early September near Drummore, Wigtownshire, although three previous records are unacceptable, and, Cloaked Pug at Minnigaff in mid-July.

Valerian Pug is also new to VC72, while Dingy Shears is new to VC73.

At the present time (late September) we have nineteen new VC micro-moth records, two of them being new to Dumfries & Galloway. Nine are new to VC72, four new to VC73 and six new to VC74.

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