Species Account

Select species and region:



Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Scarce and thinly distributed or restricted resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Feb-Mar.

Forewing: 17-20mm.

Foodplant: Silver and Downy Birch.

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 recorded190519841905
Year last recorded201120112011
Number of records347149992
Number of individuals12037343874
Unique positions696150
Unique locations616134
Adult records341149980
Immature records000

For the region, we have a total of 992 records from 134 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1905.


1659 Yellow Horned 03
© Gillian Nash
1659 Yellow Horned 02
© Vince Giavarini
1659 Yellow Horned 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A widespread species in Britain, the larva feeding on birch (Betula spp.). In Dorset, nearly all records of the moth come from the eastern half of the county where it is locally common in woods and on heaths that support good numbers of birch trees. The distribution of the Yellow Horned is similar to that of the day flying Orange Underwing1661. The lack of recent records from west Dorset for both species may be due to the relatively small amount of fieldwork carried out during the spring months. However, historically there is a similar dearth of records from this region, and it is likely that both species are at a lower density here than further east where birches tend to be more frequent. The moth occasionally flies during daylight: Morden Park, female netted whilst flying around edge of birches on 1 April 1934, female flying by day on 22 March 1938 (H Andrewes).

See background to species accounts.  Index of Vernacular names - Search - Random Species