Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Moth Skills Improvement Group on 11 May 2013




Lunar Marble Brown (Drymonia ruficornis)

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Wingspan 35-40 mm.
Similar to the Marbled Brown (D. dodonea), this species has a black crescent in the white area of the forewing.

Flying slightly earlier in the year than the former species, it is on the wing in April and May.

Inhabiting deciduous woodland, it is relatively common in the southern half of Britain, uncommon elsewhere.

Oak (Quercus) is the foodplant of the caterpillars.

Muslin Moth (Diaphora mendica)



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Wingspan 28-38 mm.
Showing distinct sexual dimorphism , the males of this moth are soft brown, the females white, both sparsely speckled with black.

It occurs in woodland, downland and suburban habitats, and is relatively common in most of Britain.

The larvae feed on a variety of low plants, including dock (Rumex) and chickweed (Stellaria).

Purple Thorn (Selenia tetralunaria)
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Wingspan 30-38 mm.
Like the Early Thorn (S. dentaria), this species produces two generations except in the northern extreme of its range, producing smaller and paler individuals in late summer.
The two broods fly in April and May, then in July and August. Where there is only one generation, the moths are out in May.
Occupying woodland, heathland and other bushy areas, this species is fairly common in southern England and Wales, becoming scarcer northwards into southern Scotland. There are only a handful of records from Ireland.
The caterpillars feed on a range of deciduous trees.

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Ruby Tiger (Phragmatobia fuliginosa)
Wingspan 30-35 mm.
Fairly widespread throughout Britain, this species is common in places. Showing a gradual variation in colour, with the brightest individuals in the south, and much duller specimens in Scotland, attributable to the subspecies borealis.

It is double-brooded in the south, flying in April to June, and again in August and September. In the north there is just one generation, in June.

The larva are polyphagous, feeding on a number of herbaceous plants.



Thanks to Paul Wilkins

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