how to ident moths

Post reports or photographs of butterflies and moths you would like to have identified.

how to ident moths

Postby ron » Wed Aug 17, 2011 6:07 pm

As a
Last edited by ron on Wed Jun 10, 2015 3:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: how to ident moths

Postby IainH » Fri Aug 19, 2011 6:38 pm

Hi Ron,

I only really took mothing seriously this year after a short-lived attempt a couple of years ago (my moth trap broke). When I started IDing in April, I found that paying attention to birdforum.net's Moths forum was helpful. I made a list of all species that forum members reported catching in April and checked my specimens against this list. This saved me from looking all the way though my moth ID guide time and time again (mind you, perhaps this trick only really works for April when relatively few species of moth are on the wing!).

A lot of people find 'Field Guide to the Moths of Great Britain and Ireland' (or their 'Concise guide to the Moths...', which is easier to use at the trap) by Waring & Townsend much better than other guides because it shows moths in their natural resting positions rather than as pinned specimens.

Almost all the pics in Waring & Townsend are life size, so comparing the size of your moth in pot to the pictures in the book can often be illuminating.

The text in the book usually gives the key ID features, such as kinks in a certain crossline, a characteristic spot on a certain part of the wing, or wing shape.

It becomes a lot easier to sort through dull brown moths after a few trapping sessions. However, I'll hold my hands up and say that if I trap a worn brown moth with next to no markings left on it, then I tend to let it go rather than spend time winding myself up over it.

With regard to your moth, I'm not skilled enough to ID it. It does look rather worn, which makes IDing it from colours and patterns difficult.

I look forward to reading details of your furture trapping sessions down in Girvan.

Iain
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Re: how to ident moths

Postby ron » Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:45 am

Iain
Many
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Re: how to ident moths

Postby scottshanks01 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:51 pm

Hi Ron,
I've adjusted the forum settings so that it will hopefully generate thumbnail images of posts. I've also reduced the maximum attachement file size to 100kb to save space on the server. Testing with a photo of a Puss moth caterpillar that was found at White Lees wind farm at the end of July. We had him along to some of the public events we've been at over the last few weeks and he went down really well with kids and adults!:)
Puss Moth wee.jpg
Puss Moth Caterpillar

Puss Moth bigger.jpg
Bigger file


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Re: how to ident moths

Postby scottshanks01 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:52 pm

Looks like thumbnail problem sorted! :)
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Re: how to ident moths

Postby ron » Sun Aug 21, 2011 1:11 pm

Scott
You are a star I run linux on my PC so i think the problem solved
Ron
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