Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Very common and widespread resident.

Local Record: Grade 1   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, May-Jul.

Forewing: 17-22mm.

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 records6842128914264
Number of individuals282411124758978
Unique positions403129866
Unique locations303126660
Adult records6430128613434
Immature records50010

For the region, we have a total of 14264 records from 660 sites. Earliest record on file is in 1905.


2061 Buff Ermine 07
© Julian Francis
2061 Buff Ermine 05
© Julian Francis
2061 Buff Ermine 04 larva
© Jack Oughton
2061 Buff Ermine 03
© Martin Cade, 16 Jul 2010
2061 Buff Ermine 02
© Tom Morris
2061 Buff Ermine 01
© Terry Box, 18 May 2004

Species Account

For further information refer UK Moths.

Davey, P., 2009: A widespread species in Britain, the larva feeding on a variety of plants, shrubs and trees. In Dorset, the moth is ubiquitous and common. The first brood is on the wing between late-May and early-August, in a rather protracted emergence period. A partial second brood has been noted in most autumns over the past quarter century. The national norm is for a single brood only between mid-May and mid-July. Extreme examples of variation tend not been noted in the county, however, an example where the usual buff ground colour was replaced by a strong cadmium tint was trapped at Scar Bank by A Russell.

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