The Early Thorn and its relatives

There was an Early Thorn in my trap this morning – on the wing between February and May

It is the only one of the Thorn species which holds its wing together over its back like a butterfly

View from above

This contrasts with the Lunar Thorn

The Feathered Thorn

The Canary-shouldered Thorn

And the September Thorn

25 December moths in the trap this morning!

This morning there were 25 December moths in my trap – I’ve never seen that many before! The milder weather has certainly brought the moths out.

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Four December moths on the egg box in the trap (this gives the moths somewhere to rest / hide)

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Close up of a December moth

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A Winter moth (perhaps a Northern Winter moth – they are very similar)

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One of 6 Feathered Thorns

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A Dark Chestnut

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A Red-green Carpet

December and over 40 individual moths in the trap!

A couple of autumn moths

It is pretty cold at night now but I thought I would give my moth trap a go. First night – absolutely nothing and the second night there were just two moths in the trap.

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A Feathered Thorn – note the feathery antennae – this is a male – the adults are on the wing from September to November

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This is the Brick – beautiful colours and patterning – they have one generation per year and the moth flies between September and December

A winter moth appears

The other night during one of those heavy downpours we were coming back into the house when we were raced to the door by a moth. The moth shot in and then promptly disappeared. Managed to track the animal down yesterday.

Feathered thornIt’s a feathered thorn – so named because of the beautiful plumed or feather like antennae

This species of moth is in a group called the thorns and the feathered thorn has one generation a year and is on the wing as a moth between September and December. It very much is an autumn / winter specialist. By mid December the moths will have mated and laid eggs on a broad-leaved tree – such as oak, hazel, willow or hawthorn. The egg will then overwinter and finally hatch in the spring when the leaves start to emerge on the tree.

Moths of Devon

According to Roy McCormick’s book – the Moths of Devon – Feathered thorns are ‘widespread throughout the county’┬áin broadleaved woodlands and gardens around the county. Details about the Devon Moth Group can be found here.