New moth for Scotland

Monday 30th September 2013

A wildlife recording event in Wigtownshire discovered a species of moth not recorded previously in Scotland. On 27th August 2013 a group of experienced local wildlife recorders gathered at Glassoch, near Newton Stewart, to survey the site. Moth traps were set overnight, and on opening next morning an usual geometrid moth was found.
Devon Carpet ©Keith Naylor
Reference to the books suggested Devon Carpet, and the experienced moth recorders who attended were aware that it would be new for the region. It's a species which has been spreading northwards but had seldom been recorded much above a line between the Humber and Mersey in England. On the opening of the other traps a further four were found. Specimens were retained and County Moth Recorder Keith Naylor sent a photograph to national moth expert Roy Leverton who confirmed it as as the first authenticated Scottish record. The survey also confirmed the presence of the moth’s foodplant, Marsh Bedstraw Galium palustre, in the ditches around the site which comprised a mosaic of mire, wood pasture, ancient woodland and unimproved/semi-improved grassland. The foodplant is quite widely distributed in Dumfries and Galloway and there is potential for this species to occur at other sites in the region, so moth trappers look out for this one next year.