The wonderful colour, shape and variety of Ireland’s moths

With over 1475 moth species recorded in Ireland, we have a wonderful wealth of species to admire. For every butterfly species, we have 42 moth species. Most moths are strictly nocturnal, and these are rarely found without the correct equipment. Like butterflies, moth species have their specific flight time.  Below is a very small selection of the moths flying now.  I have included the native breeding plants these species use, underlining the need to grow the correct native herbs and trees in our housing schemes, gardens, parks, motorway embankments, woodlands, hedgerows, grasslands, and everywhere plants are planted.

Gold Spot. Breeds on Tufted Sedge, Glaucous Sedge, Yellow Iris, Branched Bur-reed, Water Plantain.
Dark Spectacle side view. Breeds on Common Nettle.
Dark Spectacle head-on view showing “spectacles”.
Buff-tip. Breeds on birch, willow, oak, holly, Common Alder, Rowan.
White Ermine. Breeds on Common Nettle, Honeysuckle, birch.
Pale Tussock. Breeds on Common Blackthorn, Common Hawthorn, Common Hazel, birch, oak, Wild Crab Apple.
Ghost moth. Breeds on Common Nettle, Common Dock.
Elephant Hawkmoth. Breeds on bedstraws, willowherbs.
Elephant Hawkmoth underside view.

If you would like to see these moths, join us on our moth morning, on June 26th. See https://butterflyconservation.ie/wp/events-2/

Bog Butterflies Forever

Large Heath, male, on a raised bog in County Kildare. Photo J. Harding
Green Hairstreak, female, on a raised bog in County Kildare. Photo J. Harding
Marsh Fritillary male, at Lullybeg, County Kildare. Photo J.Harding

Just a trio to highlight the beauty of bogs. To defend their future, and ours, we need to defend the bogs. That means no more horticultural peat, no more industrial-scale peat mining, no landfills on bogs.

And the benefits? Beautiful wildlife: butterflies, Skylarks, Cuckoos,  Curlews, Otters. Clean air: carbon storage. Clean water: flood control. Economic growth: a healthy environment brings tourists to see our landscapes. Education: study how bogs function to stabilize climate, improve water and air quality, and how they function as ecosystems. Recreation: bog walks, rambling, cycling, horse riding, boating.

And all of this for not destroying our bogs…