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 Post subject: The status of moths
PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:24 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:24 am
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Location: North Cumbria
Hi

I have just received a copy of (some of?) the Cumbrian moth records for 2010. They have been imported into Recorded 6 and a spreadsheet generated from that database. There is a column on the spreadsheet named "Taxon Status Long Name" which provides space for designations such as Nationally Notable A,B, UK Biodiversity Action Plan priority species, Biodiversity Lists - Long List etc etc. Having had a quick skim through the records, flagging up records such as Feltia subterranea Tawny Shoulder - no, I'm not joking! - I see that some species are categorised as Nationally Notable B such as Eudonia pallida, Evergestis pallidata, Dioryctria simplicella,Small Autumnal Moth, Ruddy Highflyer, Golden-rod Pug, Oak-tree Pug and a few others. Surely these can't be correct?

Does anyone here use Recorder 6 who can confirm that this is how Recorder 6 handles these species or is there some major glitch in the local biological records centre? Does anyone know where I can find an on-line definitive list of the current designations of UK moth species? I
I would be very grateful as I really need to get these things sorted soon as our moth records really seem to be in a bit of a mess!

Thanks

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 Post subject: Re: The status of moths
PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:59 am 
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Location: East Yorkshire
Could Tawny Shoulder have been a sort of typo or inputting error when it was meant to be Tawny Shears?

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 Post subject: Re: The status of moths
PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 8:23 am 
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Hi Ian

Yes, it was chased up immediately and that's exactly what it proved to be. Not a typo by the record provider, rather through the records centre - reply was "It was imported electronically by a former member of staff and so there must have been a coding error in translating the species" Worries me that this sort of error is creeping in.

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 Post subject: Re: The status of moths
PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2011 9:39 pm 
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Location: Basingstoke, Hampshire
Dunno about Recorder 6 but most of the Notable A, B, RDB etc designations for micros are <delete unnecessary expletives> useless / inaccurate, or at best out-of-date.

M

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 Post subject: Re: The status of moths
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 7:10 am 
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Mike
I wouldn't disagree with you re micros and don't get me started on the BAP "research only" category!
Out of interest, where do you get your list of NA, NB etc designations for your macro species summaries on the website? Is the definitive list published online for us mere mortals. I've searched without much success.

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 Post subject: Re: The status of moths
PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:01 am 
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Liz,

The statuses used on Hantsmoths are taken from those on the Mapmate database, and to be honest need a review. I keep on meaning to do so (like many things!), and a quick look at for instance Tachystola acroxantha - an adventive detritus feeder from Australasia -shows that this is still down as pRDB3 on my site (thought I'd cleaned that up!). I corresponded with Mark Parsons about this particular example earlier this year - it was he who allocated the status for a number of groups back in the 90s* - and he agreed that it was an anomaly; one amongst many. So if you have Mapmate, you can get them from queries over the Taxa table; guess Recorder might have something similar?

But given they were based on the known distribution at the time of Parsons' works, in terms of 10km squares, the explosion in interest in recording microlepidoptera has elevated many species out of the rare and local (Na was <30 10km sqs and Nb 31-100, but neither of these designations are in use nowadays and have been replaced by Nationally-Rare and Nationally Scarce by the JNCC/NBN Gateway) so they are of limited / no practical use, except for those spp which really ARE scarce or rare due to specialist habitat requirements. If I recall correctly, Eudonia pallida is Nb on Mapmate - a species that has in recent years been recorded in virtually all of Hants/IoW's 50-odd 10km squares alone...

* From the JNCC site: http://jncc.defra.gov.uk/page-2140
The scarce and threatened pyralid moths of Great Britain (1993) Parsons, M.S
The Pyralidae are the best-known family of the British 'microlepidoptera'. This book discusses the ecology and conservation of the 57 rarest species, using the well-known data sheet format.

A review of the scarce and threatened ethmiine, stathmopodine and gelechiid moths of Great Britain (1995) Parsons, M.S
2nd volume of the review of scarcer microlepidoptera; gives data sheets for 83 species.

Mike

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