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Author Topic: white moths in tunnel ? Now identified !!!  (Read 8784 times)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
white moths in tunnel ? Now identified !!!
« on: June 12, 2016, 05:51:57 pm »
Any idea what the myriad small white moths are in my polytunnel?  Definitely not whitefly.  They are about the size of a clothes moth but slightly more delicate, and flutter around up to 18" above the ground.  They are interested in all plants.  I did wonder if they were cabbage root flies, but those are horrid-looking black things.

Even if they are bringing some horrible plague I don't know how to deal with them as they are very agile and never stay still.

I've not seen them in such numbers before.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2016, 12:32:23 pm by Fleecewife »
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

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Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2016, 08:21:10 pm »

I've been googling images to see if they are mentioned as pests.  All I can get is white fly and cabbage white butterflies.  Definitely neither of those.

Maybe I'm just in luck and they're nothing damaging  :fc:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Lesley Silvester

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2016, 01:05:55 am »
There is something I've heard of (and had on plants) that sound similar. Can't remember what they are called at the moment but I know you catch them by greasing a piece of card and holding above the plant, They fly up in a cloud and stick to it.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2016, 08:47:54 am »
Those are whitefly MGM, annoying things, but not what I have.  The other thing you catch with a sticky board is those things which eat semi-circular bits from brassica leaf margins, and ping into the air when brushed against.  Great fun - they even have big machines which do that in organic farming  :farmer:
No, these things I'm wondering about flutter around singly and are larger than whitefly, but very much smaller than cabbage white butterflies, about 5-6 mm long, also not so brightly white.  They're like tiny fairies.........
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Scotsdumpy

  • Joined Jul 2012
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2016, 11:26:47 am »
Are they lacewings? - but they are more green with clear (ish) wings. Look like fairies though!!

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2016, 11:43:38 am »
Are they lacewings? - but they are more green with clear (ish) wings. Look like fairies though!!

Lacewings are lovely and , yes, fairy-like, but no, it's not those  :(  These wee things are a bit smaller than lacewings, and their wings are opaque.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2016, 01:00:45 pm »
You're giving us lots of wildlife conundrums at the moment, FW - you don't have a nuclear research facility near you, do you?!
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2016, 01:57:33 pm »
No - since the Windscale Channel opened up we've been fine  ;D
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

sabrina

  • Joined Nov 2008
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2016, 07:43:51 pm »
I also have them in my pollytunnel, just a few and no idea on anything about them.

Lesley Silvester

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2016, 12:42:18 am »
The other thing you catch with a sticky board is those things which eat semi-circular bits from brassica leaf margins, and ping into the air when brushed against.  Great fun - they even have big machines which do that in organic farming  :farmer:



That's the things I was meaning. You hold the board above the plants so when they jump up, they stick.


I don't know what yours can be, unless they really are fairies, in which case, you'd better leave them where they are.  :roflanim:

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #10 on: June 14, 2016, 09:07:40 am »
I think they are fairies and I will just let them be.  No-one recognises them as a pest so unless they are some weird mutation (thanks Sallyintnorth  ;D) they shouldn't do any harm.

It's one of the reasons I have a great hatred for those yellow sticky traps folk dot around their greenhouses and tunnels - they catch bees and hoverflies and lacewings and my fairy moths, all to show how many whitefly you have - you can see those just by looking.  Once something is stuck on those sticky  things there's no rescuing them  :rant:  (not the sticky boards you mention MGM which are specific to leaping bugs - they're great  :thumbsup:)
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Q

  • Joined Apr 2013
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2016, 11:59:17 am »
Are they white plume moths - the ones without the full (looking) wings

http://www.meades.org/photos_from_the_garden/white_plume_moth_1.jpg
If you cant beat 'em then at least bugger 'em about a bit.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #12 on: June 14, 2016, 05:54:06 pm »
Are they white plume moths - the ones without the full (looking) wings

http://www.meades.org/photos_from_the_garden/white_plume_moth_1.jpg


I was hopeful there, but the white plume moth is described as 24-35mm, but my moths are only 4-5mm.  Mine are also not so brightly white.
Still, good try  ;D
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

waterbuffalofarmer

  • Joined Apr 2014
  • Mid Wales
  • Owner of 61 Mediterranean water buffaloes
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #13 on: June 14, 2016, 06:07:52 pm »
there could be an abundance, and don't lunge at me here plz as I am not insinuating anything, of greenfly or other insects which have taken a fancy to your plants? I have quite a few in the garden and they seem ok, but having said that don't caterpillars like cabbage? You may even have a rare species ;D
the most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, loving concern.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: white moths in tunnel ?
« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2016, 06:16:02 pm »
I've just spent ages going through moth ID and I have a horrible thought that my fairies could in fact be devils, the diamondback moth:  http://ukmoths.org.uk/species/plutella-xylostella  I do hope not as they are apparently great pests of brassica crops.  There has been a sudden explosion of them migrating to Britain.

I'm going to have to consult further, although I don't know the appropriate place to ask.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 06:18:39 pm by Fleecewife »
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

 

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