Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Na

Local Status: Rare migrant.

Local Record: Grade 4   See here for explanation

Flight time: Jun-Jul.

Forewing: 11-13mm.

Foodplant: Bilberry.

IMPORTANT - Please note that the maps and accounts are provisional, subject to change and further update.  The whole dataset still needs to go through the final verification process and it is likely that a very small number of records will not satisfy the present requirements and there are other records that have not been formally submitted.  The information is for guidance only.

Record breakdown:

Year first recorded200920092009
Year last recorded201120092011
Number of records16134
Number of individuals15030
Unique positions14130
Unique locations14130
Adult records14028
Immature records000

For the region, we have a total of 34 records from 30 sites. Earliest record on file is in 2009.


1896 Rannoch Looper 02
© Martin Cade,
1896 Rannoch Looper 01
© Martin Cade, 3 Jun 2011

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: Essentially an inhabitant of cool temperate regions across northern Europe and of montaine regions across central and southern Europe. In the UK the species is restricted to the Scottish highlands between Perth, Aberdeen and eastern Ross, preferring old open woodland containing good stocks of the host plant bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) and cowberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea). In Dorset, this day-flying moth has been seen on two occasions both at MV light traps: Shaggs, on 3 June 2009 (Butterfly Conservation), Shapwick, on 28 June 2009 (P Davey). These examples were part of a remarkable influx to England when more than one hundred were recorded across the southern half of the country and in the Channel Islands in three distinct waves commencing May 29th and concluding four weeks later. This constitutes more than twice the total ever seen in England in the past. Holland was the likely source of origin from backtrack analysis. Furthermore, this country experienced an explosion in numbers in 2009. Commentators there related that the breeding sites seemed to be covered by orange snow, the moth was so numerous. The pose adopted in the photo is typical, and is reminiscent of Dingy Shell1874, but in that species, apart from the wings being held shut, the leading edge of the forewing tends to be perpendicular to the surface it sits on; in this (larger) species, the forewing edge tends to make an angle less than sixty degrees to the surface.

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