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: Jun-Oct.

Forewing: 17-24mm

Foodplant: Various 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 recorded1905200719701905
Year last recorded2011200820112011
Number of records7999249716996
Number of individuals208361399743692
Unique positions4832411052
Unique locations332135736
Adult records7102249415196
Immature records1002

For the region, we have a total of 16996 records from 736 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1905.


Willow Beauty 5
© Julian Francis
1937 Willow Beauty 04
© Julian Francis
1937 Willow Beauty 03
© Julian Francis
1937 Willow Beauty 02 ab.
© Paul Harris
1937 Willow Beauty 01
© Tom Morris

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A common species in Britain, apart from in the north of Scotland where it is local, the larva feeding on a wide variety of evergreen and deciduous tree and shrub species. In Dorset, the moth is ubiquitous and usually common, sometimes abundant, and least common on open heathland. The caterpillar will eat almost any plant species. The national norm is for a single brood between late June and August with an occasional second brood in September. In Dorset, the prolonged flight period between late May and late October probably comprises two brood cycles; a single brood in mid summer and a double brood with peaks in mid-June and mid-September.

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