Spring has sprung and we’ve had the moth trap out more regularly here at Coombes!

The days of capturing one lonely early moth, or the exciting day in early march when we caught a grey shouldered knott AND a dotted border, are over.

Moths are abundant now and we see species like common quaker and the Hebrew character out in large numbers.

This lovely specimen of the hebrew character below really brought a smile to my face, its distinctive pattern, bright and fresh, hints at a very fresh emergence from its pupal state (cocoon).

hebrew character-Ryan Woodcock

Amongst our last moth haul were the early grey and yellow horned seen below.

hebrew character-Ryan Woodcock

Some moth species are variable in their patterning and colouration, for example below are two individuals of the clouded drab species.

Clouded drabs-Ryan Woodcock

Pattern and colour variation amongst moths of the same species is an example of genetic polymorphism.

The most excitement seen from the team was elicited by the oak beauty seen below.


Oak Beauty-Katy Fielding

Moths tend to be seen as boring and drab however their diverse range of patterns and colouration, sometimes even seen in different individuals of the same species, make them incredibly interesting. The ability to catch them easily in a light trap with little effort, makes studying these interesting Lepidoptera within the reach of all and well worth a try. Why not give it a go yourself...

A record of one night’s trapping in early this month.


Number   of individuals

common quaker


Small quaker


hebrew character


clouded drab


twin spot quaker


early grey


yellow horned


oak beauty



Total   species

Total   individuals