Tuesday, 21 May 2013

A slow start in western Norway

Hi! I live in Bergen, western Norway and I’ve been trapping moths since the summer of 2007. I am, was and will always be a birder, but the fantastic diversity of moths through the spring, summer and autumn has made them my main “targets” from April to September. In June and July 2007 I created the first report system for moths in Norway. The report system, lepidoptera.no, revealed lots of gaps in the knowledge of moth distribution in Norway. Most traditional entomologists have worked in the southeastern part of Norway, overlooking presumed poor lepidoptera areas in western, middle and northern Norway. This made me visit interesting sites that are rarely or never visited by moth collectors, with nice results.

Anyway, the most visited site in my notebook is of course my own garden near the centre of Norway’s second largest city, Bergen. My flat is situated in the Bergen valley, squeezed in between mount Ulriken (643 masl) and Løvstakken (477 masl). My garden is at the foot (meaning about 100 masl) of mount Løvstakken, bordering to the woods (mainly introduced Sitka, but also Maple, Rowan, Birch, different Salix species and a few Pines nearby. I think the annual potential of my garden is about 300 species with one active trap through the season. However, since mid 2007 I have identified and documented about 400 species. About 20 of these have been new for the county of Hordaland.

The red pointer is on my house. Click on the picture to see the online Googlemap.

Bergen has the mildest winters in Norway, and I usually start trapping in late February. This spring has been incredibly late due to the temperatures and heavy snowfalls until early May. I reckon I have lost about 10-15 species already, because conditions for trapping has not been there. Traditional and common early spring moths such as March Moth, Lead-coloured Drab. Red Chestnut, Pale Brindled Beauty and Brindled Beauty have been totally absent!

A few days ago things finally became rather normal in the trap. When writing this my list of species in the Garden Moth Challenge is 38 (including two aggregate "species": Eriocrania semipurpurella/sangii and Caloptilia betulicola/elongella). Today, 21 May 2013, I actually got a new species for the garden; Dawn Flat-body. Not an everyday happening.

Good luck to everybody, and thanks to Tristan for the initiative and administration! I'll end this intro with some previous shots of my garden moths.

Golden Plusia
The Spectacular

Pale Prominent
The Favorite

Poplar Hawk-moth
The Alien

The Cameo
The Cameo

Large Emerald
The Turquoise

Feathered Thorn
The Sniffer

1 comment:

  1. I'm having trouble with bad insects on my Birch leafminer, I'm not sure what kind but what can I do?