Tuesday, 5 February 2013


Over the past 10 years three of the UK's moth species, Orange Upperwing, Brighton Wainscot, and Bordered Gothic have all become extinct, they follow on from another 62 moth species to have become extinct during the 20th century, and two thirds of common and widespread larger species have declined in the last 40 years.

Double Dart. Ian Kimber.

The Double Dart....

Dusky Thorn. Ian Kimber.

....and the Dusky Thorn have both suffered a 98% decrease in terms of abundance, and ongoing habit loss and the deteriorating condition of the countryside are being blamed as the major factors. But these declines are apparently much greater in the south than of those in the north, the reasons behind this disparity between the north and south is likely to be the benefits of climate warming on some moths in the north, whilst in the south higher levels of habitat loss are to blame. When we hear claims that....severe declines of once common garden moths and the overall decrease in moth abundance are a damning indictment of how human activity has devastated our native makes for pretty depressing reading and leaves man with a lot to answer for. 

Blair's Shoulder Knot. Ian Kimber.

But whilst the Double Dart and Dusky Thorn are two examples on the losing side, two moths on the winners side are the Blair's Shoulder Knot....

Treble Brown Spot. Ian Kimber.

...and the Treble Brown Spot, both of which have seen at least some increase in abundance figures.

I would like to thank Ian Kimber and UK MOTHS for allowing me to publish his excellent images of these four moth species.

I'D SOONER BE BIRDING....Hopefully tomorrow, the forecast looks good.

1 comment:

Pete Marsh said...

Double Dart is still common at Heysham Nature reserve with 98ish% of Lancashire records these days. Attention to detail with grassland management by wildlife trust staff? Heysham also provides 99.9%of the Lancashire Straw Underwing records and was in fact the commonest moth there in 2012. Similar reason?