About the Moths

We perform Moth-nights especially on our Butterfly- and Dragonfly tours and the autumn trips too, but on request we can do it on the Birding springtrips as well.

When to see the Moths
The Moth-season starts as early as the first Butterflies like Brimstones and Small Tortoiseshell come on their wings on sunny days in mid to late March. Orange Underwing (Archieris parthenias) and Light Orange Underwing (Archieris notha) are the first dayflying Moths to be seen.

Late evenings in mid to late April a couple of really attractive species are flying in the area, notably Kentish Glory (Endromis versicolora) and Emperor Moth (Saturnia pavonia).
From May onwards Fox Moth (Macrothylacia rubi) is a regular flyer in forest glades and can be seen on early evenings as well as on lamps.
On birding trips in May it´s possible to find newly hatched Hawk Moths sitting in the grass along the forest tracks we walk, notably Elephant– and Eyed Hawk Moth (Stauropus fagi)

In deciduous habitats it’s good for Scarce Hook-tip (Sabra harpagula), and potentially but rarely also Lobster Moth (Stauropus fagi), among many other species.

In mixed or coniferous habitats you can find gigantic Northern Oak Eggar (Lasciocampa quercus callunae) from June. Pine Hawk Moth (Hyloicus pinastri), Poplar Hawk Moth (Laothoe populi), Bedstraw Hawkmoth (Hyles gallii) can be seen from June onwards throughout the summer.

Daytime flyers include Wood Tiger (Parasemia plantaginis), Clouded Buff (Diacrisia sannio) and small, but beautifully coloured Purple-barred Yellow(Lythria rotaria).
Mid-late July is perhaps the very best season for Moths, when the nights are starting to get a bit darker and the lamps attract flyers better. In a coniferous habitat this time of the year you will get large Pine-tree Lappet (Dendrolimus pini), Black Arches (Lymantria monacha), Scandinavian specialities like ”Mountain Moth” Cosmotriche lobulina, the footman-species Setema cereola and colourful ”Peat-bog Carpet” Arichanna melanaria and many more species of Carpets.

In mixed or deciduous habitats or even gardens Large Emerald (Geometra papilionaria), Swallowtailed Moth (Ourapteryx sambucaria), Swallow– and Lesser Swallow Prominent (Phoesia gnoma & tremula), Pebble Prominent (Notodontia ziczac), Garden Tiger (Arctia caja), Burnished Brass (Diachrysia chrysitis), Gold Spangle (Autographa bractea), Ruby Tiger (Phragmatobia fuliginosa) are all likely to be seen, along with plenty of Carpets and Pugs.

August-September is the best time for species like Herald (Scoliopteryx libatrix),  Sallow (Xanthia icteritia) Clifden Nonpareil (Catacola fraxini) and Light Crimson Underwing (Catacola promisa) and good nights can still offer a lot of activity and plenty of species, even some Hawk Moths.

Late autumn (mid October and a few weeks on if it is mild) is good for November Moth (Epirrita dilutata), December Moth (Poecilocampa populi ), Mottled Umber (Erannis defoliaria) and Plumed Prominent (Ptilophora plumigera) to mention a few of around 15 late autumn flying species in the area.

We use the combination of mercury lamps and white or pale canvas hung on a string between trees, to attract Moths. Sugar– and alcohol baits are used for some species. The lamp– and sheet method is an active, fun way of Moth-watching as we identify the flyers as they appear.