Notice Board 2005


IDENTIFICATION: Any member of the group is able to handle identification queries on moths at any of their stages and if in doubt will refer the matter on for a second opinion. At the outset the insect should be retained or a realistic photograph provided. In general we would like to hear of moths that are classed on the site as rare, scarce or very local at the time of recording. The up to date grid square coverage map is now available by clicking onto:
Request for Information/Records from the County Recorder

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2005 Records

It would be most helpful if all 2005 records could be sent to John Ward by 31 December 2005 with any new species for the site marked. This will make the updating of the maps and write-ups a much easier job.

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13 October 2005. One Scarce Bordered Straw H. armigera taken in a garden m.v. trap at Piddington (SP85) by Richard Vandersteen.

8 October 2005. One Figure of Eight D. caeruleocephala taken at m.v. light in Salcey Forest (SP75) by Peter Sharpe. This species has become noticeably less common in the county in more recent years possibly as a result of vehicle pollution or indiscriminate hedge cutting. If anyone records the moth or has seen the caterpillar or moth earlier in the season will they please let us know.

4 October 2005. One Vestal R. sacraria taken in a garden m.v. light trap in Kingsthorpe (SP76) by Peter Sharpe. A welcome sign of presumed migrant activity.

26 September 2005. One Webb's Wainscot A. sparganii taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. The second county record for this wetland species. As the first county record for the moth was taken near to the River Nene and this record was from a large still water area it suggests that the moth could well be present at low density in similar areas elsewhere in the county. Great Reedmace is present at both sites so this may be a further indication of the preferred habitat in the county.

7 September 2005. One Convolvulus Hawk-moth A. convolvuli observed feeding after dark at nicotiana in Warmington (TL09) by Garry Heath.  

7 September 2005. One The Delicate M. vitellina taken in a garden m.v. light trap at Greatworth (SP54) by Terry Stokes. The third Northamptonshire record for the species.

5 September 2005. One Gold Spot P. festucae taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. A new record for the Reserve.

2 September 2005. One Cream-bordered Green Pea E. Cloran taken at m.v. light in a Welllingborough garden (SP86) by Derek Larkin.

30 August 2005. Webb's Wainscot A. sparganii. A new Northamptonshire record.
A single example of this nationally scarce species was taken at a garden m.v. light trap in Kingsthorpe (SP76) by Peter Sharpe. As the moth is known to have been taken in adjoining counties it has been the subject of unsuccessful targeting in the past. The catch also included one Heath Rustic X. agathina and one Mullein Wave S. marginepunctata, both of the last two species have previously been recorded in this locality suggesting the existence of small established colonies close by.

29 August 2005. Devon Carpet L. otregiata. A new Northamptonshire record.
A single example of this nationally scarce species was taken at a garden m.v. light trap in Kingsthorpe (SP76) by Peter Sharpe. The moth was found resting outside the trap. In view of records from neighbouring counties it has long been suspected that this species was present in Northamptonshire and it is particularly pleasing that it has at last been found.

28 August 2005. One Gold Spot P. festucae taken in a garden m.v. light trap at Greatworth (SP54) by Terry Stokes.

23 August 2005. Two The Butterbur H. petasitis were recorded at a known patch of its foodplant at Chapel Brampton Crossing (SP76) by Mark Hammond and Keith Tailby. Despite two Heath actinic traps being in operation for the first two hours after dusk, one moth was boxed at sunset whilst sitting on a grass stem and the other netted in flight around the Butterbur plants. Further "large noctuids" were seen on the wing, suggesting a larger population, but due to their speed in flight, these individuals were not positively identified.

15 August 2005. Three The Chevron E. testata taken by Mark Hammond using 6W Heath actinic traps left overnight at Old Dry Hills (SP98), which forms part of the Fermyn Woods complex. These formed part of an eleven species catch for the night, a rather disappointing tally for the time of year.

5 August 2005. Despite suffering from cold winds and clear skies, approximately thirty of the Biodiversity Action Plan species, Square-spotted Clay X. rhomboidea were recorded during the NMG event at Bedford Purlieus (TL09). Many of these were seen from dusk onwards, feeding on the flowers heads of Thistle and Burdock, with more coming to mercury vapour light traps set over a wide area of the wood. In total, seventy-two species were seen, including singletons of The Chevron E. testata, several Dark Umber P. transversata and Pretty Chalk Carpet M. procellata. Click here for full catch list.

29 July 2005. The NMG trip to Titchmarsh Lakes Reserve (TL08) was a last minute change from the originally published venue, which resulted in a total of fifty-five species being recorded at this under worked site. None of the target species were recorded, but the session resulted in forty-seven species being added to the Reserve list. The most notable species was a singleton of Lesser Cream Wave S. immutata, which was netted just after dusk. Click here for full catch list.

22 July 2005. One Narrow-winged Pug E. nanata taken in a garden m.v. light trap in Kettering (SP88) by John Ward. The moth was in good condition and a new record for the grid square, presumably an import from garden heathers.

17 July 2005. Two Garden Tiger A. caja taken in a garden m.v. light trap at Greatworth (SP54) by Terry Stokes.

17th July 2005. One Gold Spot P. festucae taken at a garden m.v. light trap in Kingsthorpe (SP76) by Peter Sharpe. This follows up a record on 8th August 2003 of the same species at the same location.

17 July 2005. Four Red-tipped Clearwing S. formicaeformis attracted to pheromone lure in the Nene Valley by Jeff Blincow. One at Ransom Road Lake (SP75) at SP769591 and three at Clifford Hill Gravel Pits (SP76) at SP797601. These records represent two new grid square records.

17 July 2005. Five Six-belted Clearwing B. ichneumoniformis were flushed from bird's foot trefoil between 10.30a.m. and 11.30a.m.at Brigstock Country Park (SP98) by Roger and Simon Payne. This has been a reliable locality for the species for some years.

16 July 2005. One Garden Tiger A. caja part of a forty-eight species catch taken from two 125 m.v. light traps left overnight at Storefield Wood and quarry (SP88) by John Ward. As an indication of the decline of this formerly common moth the last time that I personally saw it in the county was 15 July 2001 at Boughton Park. The remainder of the catch was primarily of common moths the only local species being a single Triple-spotted Pug E. trisignaria ab. angelicata which updates an old record for the grid square.

15 July 2005. Sixty-three species were seen during the NMG trip to Priors Hall Quarry (SP99). Most significant records include a singleton of The Concolorous 5 C. extrema, along with a number of moths classified as "Local" in the county, including thirteen Fen Wainscot A phragmitidis, one The Chevron E testata, two Maple Pug E inturbata and one Triple-spotted Pug E trisignaria. In addition to these, over one hundred of the nationally scarce Mere Wainscot C. fluxa were seen. Click here for full catch list.

14 July 2005. One Blackneck L. pastinum, two Small Rufous Coenobia rufa and three Orange Footman E. sororcula taken at m.v. light traps at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Philip Horsnail and Jeff Blincow as part of a ninety-three species catch. Other notable species were 40+ Mere Wainscot C. fluxa, two Scallop Shell R. undulate and one The Chevron E testata.

13 July 2005. One The Concolorous C. extrema and a further late Orange Footman E. sororcula taken in an m.v. light trap at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Steve Brayshaw.

13 July 2005. Six Red-tipped Clearwing S. formicaeformis attracted to pheromone lure in the Nene Valley by Jeff Blincow. Two at Earls Barton Gravel Pits (SP86) at SP864623, one at Ditchford Gravel Pits (SP96) at SP943683, one at Thrapston Gravel Pits (SP98) at SP999801 and two at Thrapston Gravel Pits (TL08) at TL002801. These records represent four new grid square records.

12 July 2005. One Mere Wainscot C. fluxa taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. The first site and grid square record for this nationally scarce species.

11 July 2005. Ten Orange-tailed Clearwing S. andrenaeformis and one Yellow-legged Clearwing S. vespiformis attracted to pheromone lure in a private area of Yardley Chase (SP85) by Jeff Blincow.

10 July 2005. Two Orange-tailed Clearwing S. andrenaeformis attracted to pheromone lure in Salcey Forest by Jeff Blincow. One in (SP85) at SP805510 and one in (SP75) at SP797513. These are the first records for Salcey Forest and the latter is a new grid square record.

10 July 2005. One Triple-spotted Clay X. ditraperium taken at m.v. light in a Welllingborough garden (SP86) by Derek Larkin. The second post 1979 record for the county.

9 July 2005. One The Coronet C. ligustri ab. coronula taken in a garden m.v. light trap at Greatworth (SP54) by Terry Stokes. Although always local the species was formerly more widespread in the county. All previous post 1980 records have been from north Northants, so hopefully this is an indicator that the species is recovering its former range.

9 July 2005. One True Lover's Knot L. porphyrea part of a seventy-five species catch from two 125 m.v. light traps left overnight on the edge of quarried land bordering Storefield Wood (SP88) by Brenda and John Ward. Although described in literature as the most common noctuid of heathland throughout the British Isles, this is a rare moth for Northamptonshire due to the county's lack of heather and only the third record of the species since its demise from Castor Hanglands in the late 1930's.

9 July 2005. The NMG trip to Twywell Hills & Dales (SP97) was blessed with reasonably good weather conditions. Fifty-five macro species were recorded, including eleven of one of the target species Heart and Club A. clavis, and a single Marbled Coronet H. confusa. The Heart and Club were particularly well marked and included some extreme melanic examples considerably darker than any of us had seen before despite having seen really dark forms elsewhere in the country. The National Moth Night target species (Chalk Carpet S. bipunctaria) was not seen on this occasion. Click here for full catch list.

8 July 2005. One Orange Footman E. sororcula taken in an m.v. light trap at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Steve Brayshaw. A late record.

8 July 2005. Two Heart and Club A. clavis and six Mere Wainscot C. fluxa taken at actinic light at Priors Hall Quarry (SP99) by Mark Hammond.

3 July 2005. One Hornet Moth S. apiformis seen at rest on a poplar tree trunk at Wicksteed Park (SP87) by Roger Payne. Additionally Roger found a Red-tipped Clearwing S. formicaeformis at Fermyn Wood (SP98) on 22 June 2003. Neither of these moths were attracted to pheromone lure.

1 July 2005. The NMG trip to a private area of Yardley Chase (SP85) proved very successful with 110 macro species being recorded. Traps were laid out all night, and despite a couple of light showers, temperatures held up well, not dropping below 16C. Approximately twenty The Concolorous P. extrema were recorded, along with a small number of Mere Wainscot P. fluxa and twelve Heart Moth D. oo , most of which were form ab. renago. Interestingly, the most common moth encountered was the micro Green Oak Tortrix T. viridana, of which maybe two or three thousand were seen. Click here for full catch list.

30 June 2005. One Garden Tiger A. caja taken at m.v. light in a Welllingborough garden (SP86) by Derek Larkin. An ever decreasing and seldom recorded species in the county nowadays.

27 June 2005. Six Orange-tailed Clearwing S. andrenaeformis attracted to pheromone lure at Bedford Purlieus (TL09) by Keith Tailby.

25 June 2005. A single Pimpinel Pug E. pimpinellata taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail.

24 June 2005. The NMG trip to Bedford Purlieus (TL09) resulted in 96 species being recorded. An impressive total that indicates the potential of this recently underworked site. Unfortunately, neither of the target species were seen on this occasion, despite The Festoon A. limacodes having been seen here in recent days, but The Concolorous P. extrema was recorded. Click here for full catch list.

23 June 2005. A single Lunar Hornet Moth S. bembeciformis was seen at rest on a Sallow trunk at Harrington Airfield (SP77) by Philip Horsnail.

23 June 2005. Thirty-one Elephant Hawk-moth D. elpenor taken in a garden m.v. light trap in Kettering (SP88) by John Ward. An exceptionally hight number of this attractive species that has for some years been the most common hawk moth in this garden trap.

23 June 2005. Two The Concolorous C. extrema taken at two 125 m.v. light traps left overnight on the edge of quarried land bordering Storefield Wood (SP88) by Brenda and John Ward. Part of a fifty-three species catch that also included two Blackneck L. pastinum effectively updating a thirty year old record for SP88. There are no known previous records for The Concolorous from Storefield Wood.

22 June 2005. One Orange-tailed Clearwing S. andrenaeformis, two Red-tipped Clearwing S. formicaeformis and one Yellow-legged Clearwing S. vespiformis attracted to pheromone lure in a private area of Yardley Chase (SP85) by Jeff Blincow.

21 June 2005. Four Orange-tailed Clearwing S. andrenaeformis attracted to pheromone lures at Yardley Chase (SP85) by George Higgs.

19 June 2005. Two Red-belted Clearwing S. myopaeformis attracted to pheromone lure in a Northampton Orchard (SP75) by Jeff Blincow.

19 June 2005. One Red-tipped Clearwing S. formicaeformis to pheromone lure at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Keith Tailby. The moth was taken at 3.45pm.

19 June 2005. Yarrow Pug E. millefoliata. A new Northamptonshire record.
For the past few years Derek Howton and I thought that the nationally scarce Yarrow Pug had probably spread to Northamptonshire. On a number of occasions we unsuccessfully swept yarrow growing in the north of the county. Last autumn I tried again in north Northants and encountered the usual run of Tawny Speckled, Bordered, Wormwood, Lime-speck, Grey and Common Pug larvae. By October I had turned my attention to the high windy open ground at Barford Meadows where there always seems to be an abundance of yarrow. My early attempts resulted in more of the same but I then started to take a different larva that I became convinced was Yarrow Pug. On the 19 June 2005 the first of these pugs emerged, a fine female Yarrow Pug that was reared from a full-grown caterpillar swept from yarrow on 16 October 2004. The moth was photographed by Derek Larkin and released back onto the Reserve. If needed this is further confirmation that there are still new species to be found for the county especially away from our well-worked woodlands.

18 June 2005 Thirty-two The Festoon A. limacodes taken in m.v. light traps at Bedford Purlieus (TLO9) by Pete and Diane Sharpe, George Higgs and Jeff Blincow.

17 & 18 June 2005. Two 125 m.v. light traps were left for the two nights on the edge of quarried land bordering Storefield Wood (SP88) by Brenda and John Ward. Overall sixty-four species were recorded including a single Shaded Pug E. subumbrata and one Golden-rod Pug E. virgaureata. The Shaded Pug is a grid square record for SP88. This site was formerly quite reliable for producing Light Feathered Rustic A. cinerea.

17 June 2005. One The Four-spotted T. luctuosa taken in an m.v. light trap at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Steve Brayshaw. Yet another Northamptonshire single record for the species which is a nationally scarce moth and a new record for SP85. In recent years there have been several records of singletons of this species in the county. Nationally it is suspected that the moth is an immigrant but as Northamptonshire is not a particularly good county for migrants I think that our moths are more likely to be wanderers from undiscovered colonies. The moth flies by day visiting flowers and there must be plenty of flowery places where the field bindweed grows on Yardley Chase which would potentially provide the favoured habitat for the species. If anyone has the time for a walk in the Chase on a sunny day in such a habitat this may provide further sightings and help to resolve the migration issue.

15 June 2005. One Tawny Shears H. perplexa taken in a garden m.v. trap at Grimscote (SP65) by Angus Molyneux. A grid square record and a dinstinctly uncommon moth for south Northants.

14 June 2005. One The Festoon A. limacodes taken in an m.v. light trap at Bedford Purlieus (TLO9) by Jeff Blincow. Other notable species were two Clay Triple-lines C. linearia, four The Concolorous P. extrema, three Grass Wave P. strigillaria, two Pretty Chalk Carpet M. procellata and two Small Waved Umber H. vitalbata.

10 June 2005. Almost predictably, the weather turned against us for the NMG trip to Twywell Hills & Dales (SP97). Only the previous night the temperatures remained in double figures under cloudy skies, but our visit to this much under-worked grassland site suffered from a North-easterley breeze and clear skies. Temperatures in one area of the site dropped to 2C. As a result, we packed up early and headed for warmth. Nine species were recorded in the hour of trapping, best of which was a single Small Elephant Hawk-moth D. porcellus. Click here for full catch list.

9 June 2005. One Red-necked Footman A. rubricollis and fifteen The Concolorous P. extrema taken at five m.v. lights running at Ring Haw (TL09) by Ron Follows, these were part of an eighty-two macro species catch. The Red-necked Footman is a pleasing grid square update of the 1975 Bedford Purlieus record.

9 June 2005. One The Concolorous P. extrema taken in an m.v. light trap at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Steve Brayshaw.

9 June 2005. Three The Concolorous P. extrema taken in an m.v. light trap at Yardley Chase (SP85) by Jeff Blincow. Other notable species were seven Brindled White-spot P. extersaria, one Orange Footman E. sororcula, three Poplar Lutestring T. or, one Scallop Shell R. undulate and one Small Waved Umber H. vitalbata.

9 June 2005. Chimney Sweeper O. atrata and Small Yellow Underwing P. tenebrata seen flying at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. Again both very late first sightings of these two local species and as at Barford the Chimney Sweepers almost certainly emerged today.

9 June 2005. Five Chimney Sweeper O. atrata and two Small Yellow Underwing P. tenebrata seen flying in the SSSI at Barford Meadows (SP88) by John and Brenda Ward. Both very late dates for first sightings of these two local species at this locality.

8 June 2005. Two Marsh Pug E. pygmaeata seen flying in the SSSI at Barford Meadows (SP88) by John Ward. A late sighting for this nationally scarce pug as compared to last year when it was first seen on 18 May.

2 June 2005. One Cream-bordered Green Pea E. clorana taken in a garden m.v. trap at Piddington (SP85) by Richard Vandersteen.

30 May 2005. One Orange Footman E. sororcula was taken in a Welllingborough garden (SP86) by Derek Larkin. An update of the 1905 record for the grid square.

27 May 2005. A dozen plus Orange Footman E. sororcula were taken at m.v. light in Salcey Forest (SP75) by Pete and Diane Sharpe, indicating that the species is now well established in the Forest.

26 May 2005. One Pinion-spotted Pug E. insigniata taken in a garden m.v. trap at Piddington (SP85) by Richard Vandersteen. A good record for this nationally scarce, but in my opinion, very likely under-recorded species.

25 May 2005. One Rivulet P. affinitata taken in a garden m.v. trap at Grimscote (SP65) by Angus Molyneux. This record once again emphasising the westerly distribution of this species within the county.

6 May 2005. The Northants Moth Group visit to Salcey Forest (SP76) produced a thirty species list. Temperatures were quite good for the time of year, but light showers soon turned into persistent, heavy rain, forcing the bedraggled group to pack up after only two hours of work. Neither of the target species were seen, but a further Orange Footman E. sororcula was recorded. Other nationally local species seen included Poplar Lutestring T. or, Scorched Carpet L. adustata and a single Seraphim L. halterata. Click here for full catch list.

3 May 2005. Three Orange Footman E. sororcula were taken at m.v. light in Hazelborough Forest (SP64) by Keith Tailby, Mark Skevington and Adrian Russell, part of a twenty-eight species catch. This is another new grid square record for this moth, and follows on from a number of sightings of this species in 2004.

1 May 2005. One Orange Footman E. sororcula taken in an m.v. light trap in Salcey Forest (SP76) by Diane and Pete Sharpe. A new grid square record for this spreading species.

30 April 2005. One Great Prominent P. anceps taken in a garden m.v. trap at Farthingstone (SP65) by Paul Egerton. A new grid square record for the species.

30 April 2005. The second Northants Moth Group outing to Collyweston Deeps (TF00) proved to be a very productive affair. The temperature was very mild for the time of year, and despite a few short showers, trap results were very good, especially in the more sheltered spots. Forty-four species were recorded, including one of the target species, a single Northern Drab O. opima, which was taken at m.v. light. Despite some effort searching and beating the blackthorn bushes at dusk, larvae of the other target species, Lappet G. quercifolia, were not seen. Click here for full catch list.

25 April 2005. Numerous webs were seen on Hawthorn hedgerow near Peterborough (TL09) by Philip Horsnail. Upon further inspection the following day by Mark Hammond, these webs were confirmed to be the communal larval webs of Brown-tail E. chrysorrhoea. They are present along a stretch of approximately 100m or more of this hedgerow, which was is believed to have been planted a few years ago. Due to the number of webs present, and the approximate age of the hedgerow, it seems less likely that their presence is a result of recent importation on new hedging materials, as has been presumed with the Maxey record of 3rd February.

24 April 2005. Two Scarce Prominent O. carmelita and one Frosted Green P. ridens were taken at m.v. light in Yardley Chase (SP85) by Jeff Blincow.

23 April 2005. Two male Emperor Moth S. Pavonia were taken by Mark Hammond by assembling to a virgin female moth at Wadenhoe (TL08). This moth has not been recorded in this particular grid square since prior to1960. A further attempt at Lutton the following day (TL18, just East of Ashton Wold) failed to record this species, possibly due to the dull afternoon weather.

11 April 2005. One Northern Drab O. opima was taken at m.v. light at Collyweston Deeps (TF00) by Jeff Blincow.

9 April 2005. The first Northants Moth Group trip to Castor Hanglands (TF10) started much as we left off last year, with neither target species being recorded! In the case of the Barred Tooth-striped, this may be due to the considerable overgrowth of Blackthorn in recent years, which may have reduced the amount of Privet extant on this site. The weather was still against us on the night, but once under cover of the trees, the temperature was actually quite bearable. Nineteen species were recorded in total, the most significant of which were two White-marked C. leucographa. Click here for full catch list.

27 March 2005. A single White-marked C. leucographa was taken in one of two actinic Heath traps left overnight by Mark Hammond in the Royal Coppice part of Fermyn Woods (SP98), part of a sixteen species catch.

26 March 2005. One Dotted Chestnut C. rubiginea taken at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. The third county record and second Northants locality for this nationally spreading species.

26 March 2005. Twenty plus Light Orange Underwing A. notha seen flying at Grafton Park Wood (SP98) by Mark Hammond. Many Orange Underwing A. parthenias and a single male Emperor Moth S. Pavonia were also seen.

26 March 2005. One Orange Underwing A. parthenias seen flying at Barford Meadows (SP88) by Brenda and John Ward, a new locality record for this local species.

25 March 2005. An abortive trip to Bedford Purlieus (TL09) for Barred Tooth-striped T. polycommata was made by Mark Hammond, Bob Gill and Philip Horsnail. Overall eighteen species were recorded the most significant of which were six Yellow Horned A. flavicornis

24 March 2005. A total of 3407 moths covering twenty-nine species were taken in Hazelborough Wood (SP64) at one sheet light and six m.v. light traps by Keith Tailby and Graham Finch. The catch included 2766 Small Quaker O. cruda, 137 Common Quaker O. cerasi, and forty-eight Oak Beauty B. strataria. The most significant moths seen were two White marked C. leucographa and three Blossom Underwing O. miniosa.

23 March 2005. One Small Eggar E. lanestris was taken in a garden m.v. light trap at Chelveston (SP96) by Simon Wantling.

21 March 2005. Seven Orange Underwing A. parthenias seen flying in Yardley Chase (SP85) by Jeff Blincow.

3 February 2005. There is a colony of Brown-tail E. chrysorrhoea moth caterpillars in communal webs on the A15 Deeping by-pass near to Maxey (TF10). The identification was determined by Paul Waring. These could have been imported with recently planted road screening bushes. Few recent records.

31 January 2005. A single Oak Beauty B. strataria was recorded at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. This moth is not usually seen until March or April.

30 January 2005.One March Moth A. aescularia taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. Early but does sometimes appear in January - It was on the wing in Geddington Chase on 24 January 1987.

25 January 2005. One Clouded Drab O. incerta taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail.

10 January 2005. One Dotted Border A. marginaria taken at m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail.

9 January 2005. One Double-striped Pug G. rufifasciata taken at a lighted window in Little Billing (SP86) by Hugh Matthews. The earliest record that I hold for this species is in March.

3 January 2005. One Hebrew Character O. gothica to m.v. light at Pitsford Reservoir (SP77) by Philip Horsnail. A further indication of the forward season.