Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Scarce and thinly distributed resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: Two generations, May-Jun, Jul-Sep.

Forewing: 11-15mm.

Foodplant: Clovers, Trefoil and Lucerne.

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 recorded19291929
Year last recorded20112011
Number of records104208
Number of individuals158316
Unique positions4386
Unique locations3672
Adult records100200
Immature records00

For the region, we have a total of 208 records from 72 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1929.


1894 Latticed Heath 01
© Martin Cade, 22 Aug 2009

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A species found in all but northern Scotland, the larva feeding on clover (Trifolium spp.) and trefoil (Lotus spp.). In Dorset, the moth used to be resident in unimproved grassland, on dry chalky, arable land across the county, for example it was recorded on twenty-four occasions in the 1930s at Chamberlaynes (H Andrewes), and 'fairly common' on Badbury Rings on 12 May 1934 (S Scarsdale-Brown). Clovers, trefoils and sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia) grew abundantly within the primary crop and once the corn or wheat had been harvested, livestock were put out to graze the flora-rich fields that remained. Dorset supports vast areas of arable land today, but the use of herbicides and pesticides is so widespread, and the practice of ploughing right up close to the hedge with no room for conservation headlands, provides little scope for the moth to become established. So optimum habitat is virtually absent and no colonies have been detected in recent years. The melanic form ab nocturnata has been seen on one occasion: Iwerne Minster, one by day on 10 May 1946 (J Upton). The moth is now only recorded at times of immigrant activity, and continental sources are suspected for most if not all post-1950s examples.

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