Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Fairly common and fairly widespread resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Sep-Dec.

Forewing: 19-23mm.

Foodplant: Broadleaved trees.

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 recorded195519751955
Year last recorded201120112011
Number of records10151032236
Number of individuals34062057222
Unique positions11710254
Unique locations9811218
Adult records9481032102
Immature records102

For the region, we have a total of 2236 records from 218 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1955.


1923 Feathered Thorn 05
© Julian Francis
1923 Feathered Thorn 04
© Julian Francis
1923 Feathered Thorn 03 female
© Paul Harris
1923 Feathered Thorn 02
© Phyl England 24 Nov 2012
1923 Feathered Thorn 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A common species in southern Britain, more local further north, the larva feeding on a variety of deciduous tree and shrub species. In Dorset, the moth is widespread and usually common, particularly so in deciduous woodland, but seemingly not as abundant as in former times. "In some years the larvae are destructively abundant forming a high percentage of the plague of winter moth caterpillars" (W Parkinson Curtis).

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