Do Suffolk moth recorders consider this moth to be only a migrant to Suffolk or has there been any evidence of breeding?
An interesting query Paul. I view the species as a regular here at home and therefore believe it to be resident. However I have no further evidence other than its regularity to confirm it as resident. I have a lot of mallows and hollyhocks in my garden and there is plenty of tree mallow in the Sandlings so the larval foodplant is around. I also have an abundance of Pexicopia malvella and Mallow moths here for example. I therefore see no reason not to consider it as resident. There are very many moths that are ‘resident’ without us having evidence, in some cases even without a knowledge of the larval foodplant. Having said all that, it is also realistic to consider it as an immigrant too. We now have the Four-spotted Footman, Pigmy Footman and Cydia amplana resident in Suffolk that are also immigrant and several others that have established too!
Thank you for your response Raymond. They are pretty much my thoughts too – a mix of “resident” and “migrant” without hard evidence for either. And, as you said, that applies to quite a few other species too.
Without any SMG website updates for some time now it is very difficult/impossible to know how frequently others are seeing these species.
I would add a further point. I think the cuurrent catches are immigrants. What I think are residents were caught a couple of months ago.
Hello Paul, Raymond
For what it’s worth, I have never recorded Crocidosema plebejana here in Woolpit. I would say that Mallow Moth is a common although not regular garden moth for me, and I have only ever seen the one Pexicopia malvella here.
Note sure what this means in terms of the resident / migrant debate but perhaps a view from here in the west of the county.
I’ve only ever caught it once here at IGC, with the other places I have seen it being mainly on the coast. So not breeding here with me. I have lots of Mallow in my garden and close by on the golf course. Mallow and P.malvella regular here.
I agree that it is probably locally resident along the coastal strip with numbers being boosted by immigration. Even if larvae were found would this prove residency, when they could be offspring from earlier migrants? Colonies could only be temporary too, like with what probably happened with Clancy’s rustic that was being noted regularly on the coast a few years back but has now become rare again.
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