What moths could you discover during Moth Night 2021?

Moth Night 2021

Moth Night is a fun event; it’s free to take part and open to everyone!  Most moths are night flying insects; they’re out and about doing their thing, while we’re usually tucked up indoors.  Consequently, many people miss out on seeing even a single species of moth, during the year; this is a great shame, as moths are incredibly beautiful and very interesting creatures.

If you’re interested in discovering what moths visit your garden, why take a Moth Count?  The results from participants’ Moth Night, Moth Counts will help to inform Atropos, Butterfly Conservation, and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, of the range and numbers of moth species present in the British Isles, at this time of year.  This is such valuable information, by taking part you’re helping to provide moth experts with useful data that would be impossible to gather without help from the public.

Moth Night was founded by Mark Tunmore, the Editor of Atropos, in 1998.  It’s an annual event, that runs for three consecutive nights.

Moth Night is organised by Atropos, Butterfly Conservation, and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

Moth Night 2021 Dates

I wanted to let you know about Moth Night with plenty of time to arrange your own moth explorations!  Get your diary ready – this year, Moth Night will be held on:

  • Thursday 8th July 2021
  • Friday 9th July 2021
  • Saturday 10th July 2021

The Theme of Moth Night 2021

This is an L-album Wainscot Moth (also known by its scientific name, Mythimna l-album). Pictured on the 29th June 2021.

This year, Moth Night’s theme is Reedbeds and Wetlands.  Wetlands and reedbeds are important habitats for moths, birds, and other wildlife.  Many Wainscot Moth species are found in these areas, you could also see a Beautiful China-mark Moth.  Visit Moth Night’s website and see if you can find a Moth Night group event at wetland near you.

A Large Wainscot Moth (Rhizedra lutosa) as pictured on the 13th July 2020.

July Moths

To give you some ideas of what moths are flying at this time of year, I thought I’d show you some photographs I’ve taken of moths in my garden.  These moths are all out and about in July……

A Buff Ermine Moth (Spilosoma lutea) pictured on the 3rd July 2020.
A Dark Arches Moth (Apamea monoglypha), as pictured on the 13th July 2020.
A Buff Arches Moth (Habrosyne pyritoides) as pictured on the 3rd July 2020.
Not all moths flying at night. I spotted this Cinnabar Moth (Tyria jacobaeae) on the Leucanthemum vulgare near my wildlife pond in the daytime.
This is a Peppered Moth (also known by its scientific name, Biston betularia).
This is an Orange Footman Moth (Eilema sororcula).
This is a Swallow-tailed Moth (also known by its scientific name Ourapteryx sambucaria).
The Buff-tip Moth (Phalera bucephala) is one of my all time favourite moths!
Can you spot anything hidden in this picture? The Willow Beauty Moth has wings with fantastic camouflage.
The Coronet Moth (Craniophora ligustri).
A Light Emerald Moth (Campaea margaritaria) pictured on the log pile in my garden.
A Least Carpet Moth (Idaea rusticata) resting on a ‘Strawberry Hill’ rose leaf, as pictured on the 13th July 2020. This rose is growing close to my pond.
This is an Elephant Hawk Moth (Deilephila elpenor) that was found near my wildlife pond.
A Treble Lines Moth (Charanyca trigrammicah) pictured on fallen leaves near my wildlife pond.
The Brimstone Moth (Opisthograptis luteolata).
This is the Lobster Moth (Stauropus fagi).
This very pretty moth is a Small Blood-vein Moth (also known by its scientific name, Scopula imitaria).
This is the Spectacle Moth (Abrostola tripartita). It gets its name because it looks as if it’s wearing spectacles!
The Privet Hawk Moth is found in England, Scotland, and Wales. These moths frequent woodlands, gardens, hedgerows, fens, and coastal districts.
The Shears Moth often visits my garden. This is a commonly found moth.
This magnificent creature is a Common Emerald Moth (also known by its scientific name, Hemithea aestivaria).
A Heart and Dart Moth (Agrotis exclamationis) pictured near my wildlife pond.
Here’s a lovely Green Carpet Moth. These moths wings pale in colour as the insects age.
A Common Marbled Carpet Moth (Dysstroma truncata).
This is a slightly different coloured form of the Common Marbled Carpet Moth (Dysstroma truncata).
This is a Knot Grass Moth (Acronicta rumicis).
This is the Silver Y Moth (Autographa gamma).
This is a Vine’s Rustic Moth (also known by its scientific name, Hoplodrina ambigua).
Here are three Large Yellow Underwing Moths, they’re also known by their scientific name of Noctua pronuba.

Take Part

Anyone and everyone can take part in Moth Night.  You could take a Moth Count on any, or all of the three Month Night dates.  Although, if you’re doing more than one count, please vary the area you take your Moth Count in – to avoid disrupting and catching the same moths.

Methods of Attracting Moths

If you plan on using a moth trap to take your Moth Count, then I would definitely advise you to take each Moth Count in different areas, as it’s unfair to risk catching the same moths for two or more nights running – doing so runs the risk of preventing moths from successfully feeding, mating, or laying eggs.  I’d recommend always leaving a minimum of three nights between each Moth Count taken using a trap, in the same area.  If you’re mad about moths – you could get together with friends or family – to take a Moth Count at one another’s gardens – to vary the location and take a Moth Count on consecutive evenings.  By varying the location of your month count, you’ll be able to see a wider range of moth species.

You don’t need a moth trap to take part, you could go outside with a torch to look for moths, or take a white sheet and a light outside.


Alternatively, you could try sugaring or wine roping to attract moths to your garden.  Many moths are drawn to feed on this sweet, sticky solution:

  • Slowly heat 500ml of red wine or brown ale in a pan and simmer for a few minutes. 
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add 1kg of dark brown sugar and the contents of a 454g tin of black treacle to your pan of warm ale or red wine and stir.
  • Pop the pan back on the stove and continue stirring whilst heating gently, on a low heat, until all the sugar is dissolved. 
  • When all the sugar is dissolved, simmer for three minutes. 
  • Leave the mixture to cool, then decant into a jar. 
  • Add a dash of rum and stir the mixture, just before you paint the solution onto a fence, a pole, or a piece of rope, to attract moths to your garden.

How to Submit Your Moth Night, Moth Count Results

To submit your Moth Night, Moth Count results, visit the Moth Night Homepage (here’s a link), click on the ‘submit records’ button (it’s on the right hand side of the page) and follow the instructions (if you don’t have an account, you simply register – it’s free and easy) to submit your moth sightings.  Thanks for taking part – I hope you have a great Moth Night!

See the Moths I spotted during my Moth Night, Moth Counts

See the moths I spotted during my 2019 Moth Night, Moth Count, by clicking here.

Discover what moths I caught during my 2020 Moth Night Moth Count by clicking here.

You can see photographs of the moths I’ve found around my pond, in this article.

Find more articles about moths, by clicking here.

Other articles that may interest you…………

For information on the many different beautiful plants you can grow for moths, butterflies, bees, and other pollinating insects, please click here.

To see my photographs of the butterflies I spotted during the one of my Butterfly Counts, please click here.

To see photographs of the largest orchid in the world, please click here.

For step-by-step instructions on how to create a bottle garden or terrarium, please click here.

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