Scientific name: Zygaena lonicerae
June to 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 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
- Wingspan Range - 30-38mm
- UK Biodiversity Action Plan: Not listed
- UK status: Common
- UK status: Rare (Red Data Book category 3)
- Occurs in Ireland only
Caterpillar Food Plants
Meadow Vetchling (Lathyrus pratensis), Red Clover (Trifolium pratense), Sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia)and Greater Bird’s-foot Trefoil (Lotus uliginosus). Occasionally also Common Bird’s-foot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus), White Clover (Trifolium repens) and Bitter-vetch (Lathyrus linifolius).
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.
- 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: