Notable Mochas

A wet day on Tuesday limited activity on the reserve, but the moth traps run overnight had made some interesting, indeed “Notable” captures, specifically two species of mocha moths. The first is the mocha Cyclophora annularia, an attractive species that is classified as “Notable – nationally scarce”.



The larvae feed on field maple, a tree that grows on the reserve both as young planted trees as in many areas but we also have a few mature trees that predate the gravel extraction.

The second species of mocha was even more notable, in fact it is listed in the Red Data Book of rare species. It was a dingy mocha Cyclophora pendularia, whore larvae feed on smaller leaved willow species, usually growing on heathland. Although nationally rare it is known to be present in the Ringwood area, so perhaps finding one at Blashford is not so remarkable.

dingy mocha

dingy mocha

Neither picture is great thanks to the poor light, but two good species of moths recorded for the reserve.

4 thoughts on “Notable Mochas

  1. i’ve have been conducting my own in the garden by setting out fruit to see who comes to feed the main moth that spends hours feeding is an old lady her wing tip to wing tip is 45 mm ten more than the book says.

  2. I would have thought that 45mm was nearer the mark myself, they are pretty big moths. Interestingly Old Lady is one species that rarely comes to light but does come to fruit, or sugar quiet well. One of the hazards of using only one sampling method is that not all species respond in the same way so it is very hard to say how relatively abundant each species is. You should keep an eye out for red underwing as they also like fruit as do the rarer crimson underwings. Good luck, it is good to hear of people trying the “Old ways”, the Victorians did not have MV lights so were much more inventive.

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