I’ll be taking over the blog for the next two months as the new student intern from UPenn. Along with continuing the identification of new moth species to Shandy Hall, we are now going to be recording our catches in numbers as well. Quite excited to continue the work of Patrick Wildgust and Helen Levins.
Patrick tells me I’ve brought the warm weather with me, although overnight the temperatures are still dropping to single digits – not altogether great for our moth friends. We’ve only found 40 in the past 4 days when June ought to be bringing in hundreds. It makes for a slow and easy start for me, but hopefully the good summer weather will eventually arrive and bring more moths with it.
|Water Carpet (Lampropteryx suffumata)|
However, we do have a new find at Shandy Hall, a Water Carpet (Lampropteryx suffumata). Dr. Chesmore has confirmed it. Lampros and pterux come from the Greek, meaning ‘bright’ and ‘a wing,’ respectively. This is an indication to the strong gloss on the forewings. Sub meaning ‘somewhat’ and fumatus meaning ‘smoked, smoky’ refer to the coloration of the wings of the Water Carpet. I’ve found that carpets in general are quite flighty fellows, though this Water Carpet had an especially difficult time sitting still. I waited almost 3 hours before he decided he was probably a bit tired and took a nap. Species list now at 258.
On two occasions in the past few days, we’ve also found what we think may be a White-spotted Pug (Eupithecia tripunctaria). Eu means ‘well, good, goodly’ and pithekos ‘a dwarf.’ This refers to the moth’s attractive appearance and small size, although some may not consider the White-spotted Pug’s grey colors as particuarly fascinating. Tri meaning ‘three’ and punctum meaning ‘a spot’ refer to a subterminal white line on the White-spotted Pug that is often, but not always, broken into three spots. Can anyone confirm or correct this identification?* You can either tweet us @LSterneTrust or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
* A correction to the previous identification was made by a reader. The former picture was in fact a Common Pug. The updated picture is a White-spotted Pug.