The rare Liquorice Piercer micro-moth (Grapholita pallifrontana), is only found in some southern counties of England. The moth is blackish brown in colour with pale yellow streaks across its wings and is named for its caterpillar’s habit of piercing the pods of Wild Liquorice, its only foodplant.

Flight Times

The adults fly from late May to July, when the males fly on sunny afternoons.

Size and Family

  • Family – Tortricidae

  • Small sized

  • Wingspan Range – 10-12mm

Conservation Status

  • UK BAP: Priority Species

Caterpillar Food Plants

The larvae feed on wild liquorice (Astragalos glycyphyllos) during July and August, consuming the pods and the seeds within.

Habitat

It lives in bushy areas in chalk districts in some southern counties in England.

Distribution

  • Countries – England

  • A very local species, occurring only in some southern counties in England, and on the decline.

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ben Sale

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Liquorice Piercer - Ilia Ustyantsev

Liquorice Piercer

Wild Liquorice - Ben Sale

Wild Liquorice