As Alderney is positioned in the Channel, closer to continental Europe than to the UK, its range of species can be quite different to that which is found on mainland UK. For no group of animals is this more true than for moths and butterflies, of which Alderney has a number of species that the UK may only receive on extremely rare occasions. Besides these rarities Alderney is also home to a vast number of more common, but still very interesting, species.
For more information use the carousel images, or links down the side of the page, to explore a number of Alderney's moths and butterflies.
You can also navigate to our moths and butterflies gallery to view more high quality photographs of Alderney's Lepidoptera.
If you would like to learn more about moths then moth trapping is a very interesting way to see this group of insects more closely. There are a few different types of moth trap but all work in the same basic way. Using a light source to attract nocturnal flying moths they will fall in to the trap and hide away under egg boxes until morning when they can be extracted and identified. To identify the moths they can be kept in specimen pots after removal from the trap so that they do not fly away when they wake up.
For more details on moth trapping and the correct trap and light materials to use visit the Butterfly Conservations' Moth Count website, call our resident expert on +44 (0)1481 822673 or email our Ecologists.
Alderney's Moth Traps
During the year about 20 different light trap sites are used, some only occasionally and the majority just once a week. To start with these traps were mostly home-made, from buckets and large plastic boxes but with professional electric fittings. Now there is a range of Robinson, Skinner and Heath Actinic traps and in the summer and early autumn ‘moth tours’ of several sites are made at weekends to show visitors a sample of the huge range of moths that fly in the island. Alderney's most successful trap site (pictured) is at Vallee Clos above the wooded valley.