Friday, 20 May 2016

Moth Nights 2016

Not birds, but bird food. This is just to let those of you who may be interested, that Moth Nights 2016 (formerly National Moth Night), are on the 9th. 10th and 11th of June, the targets being the Hawk-moths. I haven't decided yet, what to do for it. What is almost certain is that most, if not all of the nights will be wet and windy. They nearly always are for the Moth Nights. Because of that, I will probably decide what to do and where, much closer to the weekend in question.

While on non birding matters, Martin and I were doing our bottom BBS square, on Saturday, we came across this suspected Peziza growing in a wood chip path, on Aberdare Golf Club land.

I took a cup home and as well as obtaining a spore print, I did a Melzer's reagent test on the asci (the spore bearing tubes). I cut thin sections of a small pied of the cup and mounted them on a slide, in distilled water, placing a cover slip on top. After examining the sections like that, I took it back off the microscope and with a tissue, drew some Melzer's reagent under the slip, so that it replaced the water. After leaving it a minute or so, I drew more distilled water through, using the same process, this time the water replacing the Melzer's.
When put te slide back under the microscope and examined the asci, I could see that the very tips of them were stained blue.

These two images were taken at a magnification of  200x (each division of the
scale equals 5 microns) The blue tips of the asci can just be made out. It was
more obvious when looking through the microscope.

The blue reaction confirmed that the fungus is a Peziza, but as to which of the sixty-odd species, that remains to be seen.


  1. Amazing mark and yes i will come to the moth night and bring some apple turnovers

  2. This time, I will try to choose a venue where shotguns aren't involved. There's Pwll Waun Cynon, but that place often hosts drinking parties at night.

  3. Yes no shotgun will be better and only happy me and kathryn had left and peace park is easy place to get to and sound great.