Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Nationally Scarce B

Local Status: Rare and very local resident.

Local Record: Grade 3   See here for explanation

Flight time: Late May-Jul.

Forewing: 9-11mm.

Foodplant: Oak.

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 recorded198920031989
Year last recorded201020092010
Number of records16542
Number of individuals20550
Unique positions13230
Unique locations13230
Adult records16542
Immature records000

For the region, we have a total of 42 records from 30 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1989.


1449 Elegia similella 02
© Paul Harris
1449 Eligia similella 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A very local species in south-east England, the larva feeding in a silken web on a leaf of oak (Quercus spp.). In Dorset, the moth is rare and although headquartered and restricted to old oak/birch woodland in the far north-east of the county where it was first discovered in the 1980s, it has now been found more widely, so it is possible that this species is in the process of spreading west in tandem with the warming trend, in much the same way as Great Oak Beauty1943 and Scarce Merveille du Jour2277 appear to be doing. The following MV light trap records refer: Piddles Wood, on 9 June 2007 (P Butter et al), Holt Forest, on 16 June 1989 (N Hall), Higher Row, two on 7 July 2001, and Boys Wood, on 30 May 2003, and Castle Wood, four on 18 June 2003 (P Davey), Chase Wood, two on 16 June 2007 (P Davey et al), Verwood, on 11 June 2007 (C Court), Highcliffe, on 19 and 23 June 2006 (R Chapman). Potential dispersive or immigrant individuals from northern Europe include the following: West Bexington, 24 June 2005 (R Eden), Portland, 24 June 2005 (M Cade), Broadwey, on 16 July 2006 (P Harris). Managing a varied age structure of oak within old deciduous woodland sites, may be beneficial to maintaining this species throughout the county.

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