In line with other Montgomeryshire trappers, 2012 at Cors Dyfi has proven to be somewhat disappointing with regard to moth numbers.
The year started promisingly, high temperatures meant moth numbers in February and the start of March were very, very good. Then, practically overnight, temperatures plummeted, moths vanished and when it did finally start to warm up it also suddenly got an awful lot wetter.
As some of you know, almost constant rain throughout May and June which included the ‘superstorm’ event of June 8th/9th which was centred directly over Cors Dyfi and the surrounding area, resulted in the death of 2 of our 3 osprey chicks, the 3rd only pulling through due to intervention by a few brave souls. The site was inaccessible for 4 days and it took another 4 for the flooding to subside to levels where the whole boardwalk was again above water.
Where did the boardwalk go?
(Photo: Alan Davies)
The rains eased only a little, but enough for me to decide at the end of July to do a 3 nights-in-a-row session which proved one thing, if it stayed dry the moths came out – see here for the full report on this.
I had set out at the beginning of 2012 with the aim of doing a minimum of 2 nights trapping every month throughout the year. Road closures and further possibilities of flooding soon put paid to this, though every month, except December, was covered.
It is very difficult to pull out any highlights over such a disheartening season but I did thoroughly enjoy my 3 night session even if it did exhaust me – Garden Tiger moths may be relatively common in Montgomeryshire but to see so many in one night and in so many differing patterns was one of those events where you can only stand and watch and marvel at the beauty of nature.
The season ended with a grand total of 457 different species – 309 macros and 148 micros – and when you consider the season started with a total of 387 and throw in the appaling weather, a total of 70 new species for the site over 2012 can’t be grumbled at too much.
The new year brings many new possibilities, the site is being developed and I am looking forward to being able to set up my trap further down the reserve and in areas previously inaccessible. Who knows what new locations may bring.....