November 19, 2018

The Herald (Scoliopteryx libatrix) observations - any further value in more observations from me?

Folks here is my question: Is there any value in my continuing down these culverts this winter?

In the last couple weeks or three I have observed (though not necessarily photographed all) over 100 of The Harold.

I saw a steady increase in numbers over the last few weeks (as it got colder) in both culverts but at this point my thoughts are additions or decreases to the numbers observed may simply be my ability to see them first and foremost. I may seen more or less on a given day but I must admit that my earliest ventures into these culverts (two of them close to each other by several hundred yards) was to document weather or not they would actually winter down here and I was less concerned with an exact count of the number of specimens present and if I missed any.

Early on I located them by acclimated my eyes to the dark and thus I may have seen fewer than the last couple of times with a flashlight meaning that my data for the purpose of numbers present on given days as time went on may be of questionable value this year and may be of greater value next years with more careful observation with a flashlight.

At this point it seems obvious they will be here for the rest of the winter "wintering" though they are here year round. So I now question if there is any value whatsoever in me continuing down into these culverts? Should I continue to check once a month instead of every few days or just drop it altogether for this winter? Or drop it completely as it now seems plain and simple - they are going to winter here every year - period - meaning my survey or sorts if done.

I might also ask - is there any point in me shooting 22 specimens in one culvert in a five minute span and then creating a separate observation of each as I have done for most of the days?

I have copied all the leading identifiers and a number of curators who have helped me in the past asking for your thoughts. I realize IDs or being a curator does not make any one person here an "expert" on the species but that is not as concerning to me than the general question of "is my research for the year in these culverts done? Or do I have a unique circumstance (the sheer number of individuals present here) that is of any value that somebody can point out to me that I'm not seeing?

MISC:

👉 March, 26, 2022 - Link showing movements of one pair overwintering, part of the time with an Asian Lady Beetle. Shots span four+ months - winter 2021/22:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?order_by=observed_on&place_id=any&q=HeraldMothPair1stObv11-11-21&taxon_id=134078&user_id=ken-potter

👉 April, 21, 2022 - As of today a double check indicates all Herald Moths that overwintered here are gone. They have generally used this tunnel year round but to a significantly lesser degree in the warm months. We'll see what happens this year.

Posted on November 19, 2018 22:08 by ken-potter ken-potter | 16 observations | 4 comments | Leave a comment

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