Garden Moth Scheme

Martin Harvey's picture

If you're interested in recording moths in your garden you might like to join in with the Garden Moth Scheme (which is working in partnership with OPAL West Midlands). See details below, supplied by Dave Grundy of the GMS. If you would like to take part, please contact Dave straight away - the recording season for GMS starts on 5 March.

Wanted – More Garden Moth Recorders!

Do we really know what is happening to populations of common moths in our gardens? Yes we know that species like Large Yellow Underwing are common, but does that mean that we see 10 per night or 100 or 1000? Are those numbers going up or down? How can we measure these population changes of common moths over time? How can you make a difference to all this and contribute to help create valuable scientific statistics to measure these changes?

The answer is that we need more people to join the Garden Moth Scheme (GMS), from March onwards, to try and record this vital information.

The main aims of the scheme are to encourage more people to get involved in studying moths and therefore wildlife on their doorstep and to create a valuable dataset of garden moth records. This dataset can then be used to study the effects of climate change, change in habitats, to act as a biodiversity indicator and to plot against garden features such as distance from nearest wood, green-space etc or presence of pond, log-pile etc in garden.

So do you want to join in for 2010? If so, let us know – you will be very welcome, we are particularly keen on recorders from your area joining in.

What do you need to do to take part? You just need to count the numbers of common moths you see in your moth trap, for one night every week from March to November (and you are probably doing that already). The list of moths consists of about 250 species, common in your area and those that are difficult to identify are intentionally left out. This means that the GMS is open to recorders of all abilities – you don't have to be an expert, just get yourself a moth trap and field guide and you will be welcome! And to make it even more attractive to recorders the GMS now has its own popular chat-site for recorders, website, regular newsletter, annual report and meeting.

Please remember that the GMS is not intended to replace your county recorder – it is to work alongside your county recorder – so please still send all your moth records to your county moth recorder.

So, get in touch straight away if you want to join the GMS – your records will be really valuable for 2010.

Contact Dave Grundy via the GMS website.