6 Jul 2015

Refugia, Moths and Wildflowers

Colin Miles

June 23rd and 28th: Unfortunately the Moth trap battery wasn’t charged, so no Moths on the 23rd. However, it was put out in time for the Wild Flower day and, as can be seen from the photos below, this gave the best yield of the year so far.

In the absence of Moths we opted to investigate our Refugia. As these are rather scattered Michael took his car and together with Chris and Howard to see those near the back gate, Science Block, above the Visitors car park and those behind plant sales. Unfortunately no sign of anything interesting like Snakes or Lizards.

The rest of us made our way up to the old Waun Las Farm buildings and Keith and John carefully climbed into the loft to look to see if the Barn Owl had nested. Again nothing there though we did find an old Barn Owl feather near our boat. And they did disturb a Bat. A further look at the two Refugia in the ‘Fungi’ Meadow beyond yielded nothing and the Bramble in Hangman’s Wood had grown to such an extent that we couldn’t even see the Refugia that had been placed there. But good to see an abundance of Meadow Brown Butterflies, Burnet Moths and to see Grasshoppers – even if none of us could hear them! [nggallery id = 758]

Wild Flower day in Trawscoed Meadow on the 28th started out decidedly wild and wet, but the afternoon was much better and well attended. The Purple Orchids were numbering around 100, which is much the same as last year. But the Butterfly Orchids were in their hundreds and continuing to spread westward, against the prevailing winds. Five or six years ago they were confined to a small section at the northern end of the Meadow. And on the following Tuesday (30th) I came across an absolutely splendid soliatary specimen in the grassy meadows not far from Rock of Ages. How did it get there?

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Marigold’s Moth list below.

Chrysoteucia culmella 3 Green Carpet
Agapeta hamana 2 Garden Tiger
Eucosma cana Peppered Moth
Scoparia ambigualis 4 Buff-tip
Celypha lacunana Triple-spotted Clay
Riband Wave Green Silver-lines
Common Wave Silver-ground Carpet
2 Uncertain Buff Ermine
5ish Ingrailed Clay 2 Clay
Clay 2 Light Emerald
Small Fan-foot 2 Brimstone Moth
Clouded-bordered Brindle Udea Olivalis
6 Mottled Beauty Yellow Shell
Marbled Minor agg.
2 Treble Lines
Poplar Hawkmoth
Elephant Hawkmoth
2 Double Square-spot
2 Flame
Beautiful Carpet

Many thanks to John his photos and to Marigold and Sam Bosanquet who helped her with the Moth identification. If any volunteer or member wants to join us please send an email to Jane Down– you DON’T have to be an expert in anything, just interested. If you find an injured bird, hedgehog or other wild animal and want help and advice then phone the Gower Bird hospital on 01792 371630.