Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Abundant and widespread resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Jun-Sep.

Forewing: 16-21mm.

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 recorded1905200719701905
Year last recorded2011200720112011
Number of records4903144910706
Number of individuals117723157626702
Unique positions327134724
Unique locations243127542
Adult records436514489628
Immature records1002

For the region, we have a total of 10706 records from 542 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1905.


2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing 03 larva
© Gillian Nash, May 2015
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing 02 larva
© Jack Oughton
2109 Lesser Yellow Underwing 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: Found throughout Britain in most habitats, the larva feeding nocturnally on most plant species. In Dorset, the moth is ubiquitous and frequent, increasing to common in open areas and amongst scrub. The flight period between July and September holds true, although singletons have been trapped as early as mid-May and as late as early November. Aestivation may account for the dip in numbers in the middle of August, see phenology chart. The following light trap records are of single night catches in excess of fifty moths, all noted from coastal localities. Unusually high numbers of Large Yellow Underwing2107 were noted on the same dates: West Bexington, 53 on 6 August 1994 (R Eden), St Albans Head, 150 on 7 August 1992 (P Davey), Durlston, 100 on 29 July 1992, 65 on 26 July 2006 (P Davey).

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