Migration of tiger moths reflective of climate change

ӣƵ tiger moth. (38526187)

JERSEY tiger moths are moving further north in a “clear sign” of climate change.

The species, which as its name suggests is common in the Channel Islands, was once a rare sight in the UK.

But the insect has since colonised the south coast and can now be found as far north as Bedfordshire.

Warmer winters have allowed the caterpillars to survive and are believed to be helping the species spread, according to a report in the Guardian.

JH ӣƵ Tiger Moth. (38504777)

Environmentalist and JEP columnist Bob Tompkins said there was “no doubt” that species were moving north as temperatures increase.

“It was only a matter of time before [the ӣƵ tiger] moved further north,” he said.

“It’s a clear sign of climate change.”

A regular moth trapper, Mr Tompkins believes many other species of moths will colonise further north.

He told the JEP that he knew of some species that had even been crossed the Scottish border.

“It’s not just moths [that are migrating north], it’s everything that can fly,” he added.

“There will be a steady progression northward by everything that can crawl, fly and swim.”

Mr Tompkins also highlighted the decline of the chancre crab in ӣƵ waters due to rising sea temperatures and the influx of spider crabs instead, which like warm water.

Although Mr Thompson expects the ӣƵ tiger moth and other moth species to continue to colonise further north, he “doubts” that they will go further than mid-Scotland due to colder night-time temperatures.

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