Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Common and widespread resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Jun-Sep.

Forewing: M 12-18mm F 15-26mm.

Foodplant: Herbaceous plants.

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 recorded195919821959
Year last recorded201120112011
Number of records1431963054
Number of individuals21491384574
Unique positions1516314
Unique locations1286268
Adult records1170962532
Immature records000

For the region, we have a total of 3054 records from 268 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1959.


0015 Orange Swift 07 male
© Julian Francis
0015 Orange Swift 06
© Gillian Nash
0015 Orange Swift 05 female
© Les Hill
0015 Orange Swift 04 male
© Dave Foot
0015 Orange Swift 03 female
© Dave Foot
0015 Orange Swift 02
© Mike Hetherington, 18 Aug 2012
0015 Orange Swift 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A species occurring in most parts of the British Isles, the larva feeding for two years on the roots of bracken (Pteridium aquilinum), dandelion (Taraxacum spp.) and dock (Rumex spp.). In Dorset, the moth is abundant on unimproved grassland and in woodland harbouring bracken. A number of adults trapped in urban and rural areas where bracken, dandelion and dock plants are not dominant (for example calcareous grassland), suggests that larvae flourish on roots of other plants; the following record supports this: St Albans Head, larva found in viper's bugloss (Echium vulgare) root, adult emerged on 6 September 1938 (H Andrewes).

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