Being new this year to moth trapping I often come up with species that I just can't identify. Fortunately I have improved as the year has gone on but on the morning of July 16th I had a moth that I just could not find in any book. Fortunately I do have a couple of experts that I can call upon so later I sent a photo to them. Even they struggled with this one so it was suggested that I send a picture to Colin Pratt, the Sussex Moth Recorder. The response from Colin was very quick. He informed me that the moth was a melanic form of a Riband Wave. Although this is a very common moth this form is very rare and has never been recorded in Sussex before!!
There were many other delights in the trap, although everything else was pretty common. I did however have my only Lackey Moth of the year. This is a species that I have seen as a caterpillar many times before over the hills. The caterpillar is a very brightly coloured species.
A moth that I had many times over the year was the Buff Ermine. This one was one of the smartest of them though.
Another of my favourite moths of the year was the beautiful Peach Blossom. This specimen was the first of several that came to the trap in the following weeks.
With the rarest moth that I was going to get all year, and a first for Sussex, who would have thought that there was still better things to come on this day including another first for Sussex.