Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet

  • Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet
    Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet

Scientific name: Zygaena lonicerae

June - July. Found in England, Wales and the Borders. A medium-sized moth, forewing black with five red spots. Found on grassland, sandhills and woodland rides. Very similar to the Five-spot Burnet.

Very similar to and sometimes difficult to distinguish from the Five-spot Burnet. In general, the forewing of the Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet is longer and more pointed, the upper angle of the hindwing is more pointed and the black border of the hindwing is narrower than those of the Five-spot Burnet. Sometimes, although infrequently, the red colour is replaced by yellow.

Sometimes found commonly. The moth flies in sunshine and is attracted to a range of flowers, including thistles, knapweeds, and scabious.

Size and Family

  • Family – Burnets and Foresters (Zygaenids)
  • Small Sized 
  • Wing Span Range (male to female) -

Conservation status

Subspecies latomarginata

  • UK Biodiversity Action Plan: Not listed
  • UK status: Common

Subspecies jocelynae

  • UK status: Rare (Red Data Book category 3)

Subspecies insularis

  • Occurs in Ireland only

Caterpillar Foodplant Description


Particular Caterpillar Food Plants

Meadow Vetchling, Red Clover, Sainfoin and Greater Bird’s-foot Trefoil. Occasionally also Common Bird’s-foot Trefoil, White Clover and Bitter Vetch.


  • Countries – England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland
  • Well distributed over much of England north to the Scottish Borders and in north and south Wales. Found on Jersey. Subspecies jocelynae is restricted to Skye. Subspecies insularis is widespread in Ireland, particularly in the north.
  • Distribution Trend Since 1970’s = Britain:


Associated with rough grassland, both dry calcareous grasslands and on damper soils, undercliffs, roadside verges, embankments, woodland clearings and rides and the margins of wetlands. Subspecies jocelynae occurs on steep, coastal grassy slopes.

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