Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Local

Local Status: Uncommon and local resident.

Local Record: Grade 2   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Jul-Aug

Forewing: 10-12mm.

Foodplant: Jointed Rush, Sharp-flowered Rush and Soft-rush.

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 recorded190419831904
Year last recorded201120112011
Number of records2849586
Number of individuals3829782
Unique positions956202
Unique locations835176
Adult records2479512
Immature records102

For the region, we have a total of 586 records from 176 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1904.


2379 Small Rufous 04
© Julian Francis
2379 Small Rufous 03
© Julian Francis
2379 Small Rufous 02
© Julian Francis
2379 Small Rufous 01
© Paul Harris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A local wetland species in southern Britain, the larva feeding in the inner stems of jointed rush (Juncus articulatus), sharp-flowered rush (Juncus acutiflorus) and soft rush (Juncus effusus). In Dorset, the moth is common only very locally in marshy fields, flushed wet heaths, wet woodland rides and by ponds and lakes wherever its foodplants abound.

The species tends not to stray beyond the confines of its wetland habitat, but coastal records suggest occasional immigration, and were particularly prevalent during the heatwave of August 2003 that coincided with massive northward movements of wetland species from mainland Europe.

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