The Nature Conservation Group for the Prestwood Area

About Prestwood Nature

We are the Nature Conservation Group for the area around Prestwood, including Great Missenden,
The Hampdens, The Kingshills, North Dean and Speen

Our Aims

Prestwood Nature aims to protect and enhance the quality of the natural environment through the involvement of local people.

Coming events

Protecting Our Own Environment Registered charity No. 1114685

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Moths

Privet Hawkmoth (photo by Peter Daltry), commonly recorded around PrestwoodOf the largest moths, nine different hawkmoths have been recorded locally and the Old Lady, one of the largest residents, is quite frequent.  Another large moth, the Goat Moth, has caterpillars that bore inside trees for several years before emerging.  Its effects were noticed in early 2008 when a large ash was brought down in a storm near Great Missenden after being weakened by a vast number of tunnels throughout the main trunk. 

One Notable A species, 10 Notable B and 43 UK Biodiversity Action Plan species have been recorded.  These include the Striped Lychnis, whose larvae feed on Dark Mullein, which has strong populations in the area, becoming locally abundant at times.

A recent addition to our moth fauna is the tiny Cameraria ohridella, which lays eggs inside horse-chestnut leaves.  The larvae feed inside the leaves in “mines” and these become Elephant hawkmoth caterpillar feeding on fuchsiadiscoloured brown and make whole trees appear to be dying.  This moth found its way to Britain in 2002 and to this area by 2005.  It is now present wherever there are horse-chestnut trees.  Despite making the trees unsightly, it is not known to kill them.

640 different species have been recorded in recent times.