Shark

  • Shark
    Shark
  • Shark
    Shark
  • Shark
    Shark
  • Shark
    Shark
  • Shark
    Shark
  • Shark
    Shark

Scientific name: Cucullia umbratica

Late June to August. Common to England, Wales and Ireland but more rare in Scotland. The forward-pointing crest on the thorax gives the sharks their name.

The Shark is very similar to the Camomile Shark but usually larger in size and greyer, with shorter black streaks on the forewing tips.

The adults come to light and feed at the flowers of Honeysuckle, Red Valerian and Rhododendron. The larvae can be found from July to early September, feeding at night and hiding under the lower leaves on the foodplant during the day. They overwinter as pupae underground.

Size and Family

  • Family – Sharks, shoulder-knots, chestnuts, sallows and allies (Noctuidae)
  • Medium Sized
  • Wingspan – 44-52mm

Conservation status

  • UK BAP: Not listed
  • Common

Caterpillar Food Plants

The flowers and leaves of sow-thistles, wild lettuces, hawk’s-beards and hawkweeds.

Habitat

Usually found in open country, including urban gardens, chalk and limestone grassland, marshes, coastal sand-dunes and shingle beaches.

Distribution

  • Countries – England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland
  • Common and well distributed in England, Wales, Ireland and the Channel Islands. Local on the Isle of Man and in Scotland including the Hebrides.