Since the beginning of May my eyes have been opened to a whole variety of new wildlife I never even knew existed. Different species of bumblebee have different coloured tails, there isn’t just one species of white butterfly and there is so much more to wildflowers than the daisies and buttercups I can find in my garden. Every day at the Falls of Clyde is an opportunity to learn something new and after only 3 weeks of being an intern here, along with a number of identification courses, I have expanded my knowledge greatly and am using my new ID skills out in the field.
Moth trapping using a heath trap has been a particular favourite of mine so far even though it requires a very early rise in the morning. I find it fascinating that different moth species are in flight through different months of the year so there is always a new species to identify that was not caught in the last trap. The first trap I took part in at the beginning of May had a number of common species that had been caught multiple times before such as the Hebrew Character (Orthosia gothica). However, our latest trap that took place on Friday had quite a few different species that hadn’t been seen before such as the Pale Prominent (Pterostoma palpina) and Lunar Thorn (Selenia lunularia). These two species of moth are incredible and you would probably miss them if you didn’t know what you were looking as the Pale Prominent looks quite like a stick and I thought the Lunar Thorn was a leaf. With all this excitement I’m really looking forward to our next moth identifying session in a couple of weeks to see what else we manage to catch.
It really is amazing the wildlife that surrounds us everyday that we don’t even realise is there. My eyes have been well and truly opened to my surroundings and I find myself listening for bird calls, looking for different wildflowers and just enjoying nature so much more than I did before starting my internship.
Victoria Crabb, Assistant Ranger Intern, Falls of Clyde
Help support our vital work and join us today!