Sunday 24 April 2011

Mothing in the Garden Pt 1

Since starting my wildlife garden project, I have wanted to understand the full range of wildlife that the planting and our location in urban Stratford attracts.  While I am reasonably clued up on birds. I have had to try to better understand wildflowers, insects, pond life as well.  But there is one set of creatures that you only tend to see as something stuck to your headlights after a night drive and that is moths or lepidoptery.

To that end, regular readers who have been with us at least a year will know that I built myself a moth trap this time last year and I set out how I made it here.

Well I dusted it down and gave it it's first run out of the year two nights ago to see what I could get in the earlier part of the year.

 Grey Arches

 Tatty looking Hebrew Character

 Male Muslin Moth

 Shuttle Shaped Dart

A second Shuttle Shaped Dart

White Plume Moth

Sallow Kitten

All of these moths were placed in the early morning lighting, before the full sun got to them on an Oak log prop, and were taken with the 5Dmk2 and the Canon 180 macro.  Compared to last year when I used the original 5D, it was so much nicer with the Live view, live histogram and live exposure information, and 5 times zoom in live view plus the DOF preview button.  A delight  to use.

All the moths were then released back into dense foliage to protect them from becoming bird food.

As a relative novice at mothing, the hardest bit that I find is the identification process.  It probably takes me almost as long as photographing them.

But the best book that is recommended as the 'standard' is the one I have shown below.  Definitely worth getting.

Finally, if any reader sees that I have made any ID howlers on the above, then please do leave us a comment and let me know.  For me, one of the first duties of anyone who photographs wildlife is to know what you are shooting.

Happy Easter day


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