Thursday, 20 September 2018

Third in the series of 'One to Look out for' - the Scarce Bordered Straw

As we leave our hot summer well behind us and drift into the autumn, we find ourselves looking for potential migrant species, especially during those milder spells of weather. This brings us nicely onto our third in our series 'one to look out for', and this time I'm focusing on the Scarce Bordered Straw a species which has only been recorded at three sites in Montgomeryshire during the past ten years and a total of just 16 records in our database.

Scarce Bordered Straw recorded at Commins Coch in October 2011

The Scarce Bordered Straw is as I've already said a migrant species, therefore numbers are like to fluctuate quite wildly each year depending on the weather. It's mainly a coastal species, but can be found inland as well. It has been recorded in every month of the year in the UK as a whole, but in Montgomeryshire it has only been found from mid August to late October. There are currently no records of it breeding in the county, but it has rarely been known to breed in other parts of the UK from adults which arrive early in the season.  The known food plants in the UK are, are Scarlet Geranium, Tree Mallow and Yellow Rattle.

Scarce Bordered Straw

Scarce bordered Straw

The two Scarce Bordered Straw photos above were taken from two moths recorded at Cors Dyfi during an MMG event in August 2006.

The Scarce Bordered Straw is in fact quite a variable species in appearance as the images above clearly show, but there are only two species which it could be confused with, so confusion should be at a minimum. The Bordered Straw, of which we only have one record in the database and the Eastern Bordered Straw, of which we don't have any records, are the two species in question.

So please try to keep your traps going during mild spells of the autumn and this uncommon species may well pay you a visit.


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