Thursday, 30 August 2012

Mystery solved?

On my very first trap on 4 August, two of the first moths I pulled out of the trap were these ones.

The Annulet (and a mystery pug)

Being just two of the many moths that I could not identify, I took a quick photograph and thought no more about it. Over the next couple of days I worked through most of my photographs, but these two (and a couple of Uncertain-type moths) were troubling me.

I posted these as identification queries forums and the first replies I got suggested the larger moth was The Annulet and the smaller moth a Wormwood Pug, and I was happy with this. This was until I looked into the distributions and found out that Annulet would be quite unusual in Shropshire. So I asked another expert who thought is was not an Annulet, but actually an Engrailed. I also looked into the pug a bit more and was not happy that it could be safely identified and am still set in that view. Totally confused I posted the picture on another forum, and the unanimous opinion was Annulet for the large moth (and uncertainty for the smaller one).

So is the mystery solved? Well, yes and no. Despite all the positive identifications, the one doubting voice means there should be some uncertainty. However, I have looked and looked I am now convinced that this is The Annulet. I am very grateful indeed for those who have looked at my pictures and have given their opinions. I am just hoping that in time I will catch a more obvious example.

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