The typical form of this common species has a distinct black mark on the forewing, but in northern parts, this mark may be the same as the ground colour, or paler.

Adults can be seen feeding at sallow blossom, and is regularly attracted to light.

Flight Season

Flies throughout March and April in one generation.

The male of this common species has a brownish forewing that is quite variable but can be distinguished by a row of black dots along the edge of both fore- and hindwing. The similar looking Mottled Umber lacks these markings and are less conspicuous in the Scarce Umber.

Caterpillars can be found between April and mid-June. Overwinters as a pupa underground

Males come to light and sometimes in large numbers while the female can be found by day resting on tree-trunks.

This common species is easily recognised by their round-tipped forewing, with large, rounded, pale-outlined oval and kidney mark and uniformly grey hindwing. Markings are extremely variable but always a shade of brown or grey.

The caterpillars can be found from April to June, living at first in the developing buds before going on to feed on the leaves, fully grown larvae can be found resting on the underside of the leaf. 

The adult moth often comes to light and to sugar in large numbers but adults will also feed on sallow catkins and the flowers of Blackthorn.

A common resident. Forewing is two-toned grey and white, or uniformly grey, with black dots. Very similar in appearance to closely related Ermines and care must be taken with identification.

Can be seen in large numbers both as a caterpillar and adult moth, often coming to light. Also seen in the daytime at rest on the foodplant.

Flight Season

Flies at night from June to August in a single generation.

An Asian species, first recorded in the British Isles from Kent in 2007, where it was attracted to light. Since then sightings have increased greatly and is now encountered frequently across the south and even central London.

Flight Season

Flies from late July through to mid-September in one generation.

Distinguished from similar species by pale basal area of the forewing, and central crescent mark, which is small and faint. The Oak Processionary flies at night and can be found at light. The male is migratory but the female is much more sedentary.

Overwinters as an egg which can be found in batches on twigs. The caterpillars hatch in April and can be found until late June in communal silk nests, usually quite high up, on or often underneath a major branch, but sometimes lower down.

Flight Season

Flies from late July through to mid-September in one generation.

Often found inside houses and being continuously brooded can be seen at any time of the year. Accidentally introduced across the world with dried stored goods.

Flight Season

Flies throughout the year in multiple broods.

Size and Family

  • Family – Oecophoridae
  • Small Sized
  • Wingspan Range – 15-21mm

Conservation Status

  • UK BAP: Not listed
  • Common Resident

Caterpillar Food Plants

The caterpillars feed on dried plant and animal debris.

Often found inside houses, this Asian species was introduced into Europe and beyond during the 1840's but can now be seen throughout the British Isles.

Adults vary greatly in size.

Flight Season

Flies throughout the year in multiple broods but most often encountered during the summer months. Outdoors the species cannot survive hard frosts.

Size and Family

An abundant species that is variable in colour and sometimes pattern. The pale, or pale-outlined square kidney-mark is a conspicuous diagnostic character and only obscured in particularly dark examples. Fine dark cross-lines are usually visible, sometimes forming a series of small dark dots or dashes.

Winter is spent as a caterpillar where they feed at night from September through to April but only during mild weather. Once fully grown in March, the caterpillars spend up to six weeks in an underground cocoon before pupating.

An unmistakable moth in the early spring, identifiable by the two broad brown bands across the forewing which vary in width and are edged with black. There is a darker form where the banding is still present but less conspicuous. Ground colour varies from white to greenish grey.

Male and female are similar but the female is often whiter and the male has feathered antennae.

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