Terrestrial Invertebrates

 

Invertebrate Recording

 

The EcoRecord database holds many thousands of invertebrate records, accumulated by collectors over a period of some 120 years. These tell a story of species changes over time, from the loss of notable insects during the last century (the Marsh Fritillary in Sutton Park) to the latest records of invasive species (the Harlequin Ladybird).

 

Southern Hawker

 

Southern Hawker (Aeshna cyanea) is the largest dragonfly likely to visit a small garden pond. Adults feed on gnats and midges which they catch in mid-air.

 

The records bear witness not only to a recent revival of activity in recording of butterflies and moths in recent years, but also of a growing interest in other groups such as bees, wasps and ants. Two winged flies have been well recorded over a considerable period and the area is rich in the attractive hoverflies - these are a familiar sight in urban gardens and on wildlife sites, 165 different hoverfly species having been recorded.

 

Mike Bloxham
Terrestrial Invertebrate Specialist

 

 

In Focus: Moths

 

Moth trapping, purely for recording purposes, has increased greatly in popularity in recent years. Those of you who seek glory and fame have a reasonable probability of success by mothing. I had Orange Footman in my Stourbridge garden whilst Val Weston had Purple Marbled in Tyseley. Quite remarkable as before this only about 200 records exist for this rare migrant almost exclusively from the south coast of England. However, Birmingham and the Black Country have a number of rarities many of which are in the Local Biodiversity Action Plan, therefore building up a fuller picture of where species occur by recording is vital.

 

Garden Tiger Moth

 

Garden Tiger Moth (Arctia caja) are most common in June to August, in gardens, park, meadows, grasslands, and scrubby areas. In the past 30 years it’s numbers in the UK have declined by 89%

 

I had Orange Footman in my Stourbridge garden whilst Val Weston had Purple Marbled in Tyseley. Quite remarkable as before this only about 200 records exist for this rare migrant almost exclusively from the south coast of England. However, Birmingham and the Black Country have a number of rarities many of which are in the Local Biodiversity Action Plan, therefore building up a fuller picture of where species occur by recording is vital.

 

 

 

 

 

If you are a beginner only record those you can positively identify, some are easy and some are not. It is recommended you join a local group.


For more information visit: www.westmidlandsbutterflyconservation.org.uk


Richard Southwell
Butterfly Conservation

 

 


 


If you want to encourage more invertebrates to your garden simple things like cutting back the ivy in the spring and not the autumn will be a great help.


You could also allow a corner to grow long grass
.