Barred Hook-tip Drepanidae

Watsonalla cultraria (Fabricius, 1775)

Description: Wingspan 24-33mm. Adults are ochreous brown with a hook-like tip to the apex of the forewings. There is a central darkish band with a central discal spot.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Double-brooded in Britain. Adults of the first brood fly in May and June and those of the second in August (Skinner 1984).

Status: First recorded in Northern Ireland from the Ballykinler dunes on the 4th September 1999. There appear to be no previously published records for Ireland. There is no evidence to suggest that this record indicates an undetected resident population, since the surrounding area lacks any suitable habitat. The location of Ballykinler on the south Down coastline would suggest that it was a genuine vagrant. Another possible explanation could be its importation on young beech trees destined for garden centres.

Ecology: An attractive species associated with beech woods particularly in southern Britain. The larvae feed on beech and spend the winter months in the pupal stage.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 1647 Agassiz number: 65.003

Additional information:

UK Moths account


 Thompson, R. S. & Nelson, B., 2003 (Oct 2). [In] The Butterflies and Moths of Northern Ireland