Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Local

Local Status: Scarce and local resident.

Local Record: Grade 3   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Mar-Apr.

Forewing: 15-17mm.

Foodplant: Aspen, poplars

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 recorded193519851935
Year last recorded201120112011
Number of records49119336
Number of individuals84196560
Unique positions28566
Unique locations23556
Adult records49119336
Immature records000

For the region, we have a total of 336 records from 56 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1935.


2185 Lead-coloured Drab 02 male
© Les Hill
2185 Lead-coloured Drab 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

Similar species: 2188 Clouded Drab.

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A local species in south-east Britain, rare or absent elsewhere, the larva feeding on aspen (Populus tremula) and occasionally other poplars (Populus spp.). In Dorset, the moth is local and at low density due to the scarcity of poplar communities. However, the moth is particularly common on the Moors River at Hurn where mature black poplar (Populus nigra) trees grow along the river banks; three-quarters of the county total have been recorded at the site. The moth has also been noted in the aspen groves in Castle Hill Wood and Boys Wood in north-east Dorset, and white poplar (Populus alba) at Alners Gorse.

The species can resemble Clouded Drab2188. Diagnostics include: same size and shape as Common Quaker2187; a rounded apex; a rounded termen.

The following example was likely to be an immigrant; a second specimen was trapped on the same night on the Lizard in Cornwall, and coincided with a spectacular influx of Blossom Underwing2183 across southern England. The moth occurs throughout central and northern Europe: Preston, at MV light on 31 March 1999 (P Knight).

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