Red Twin-spot Carpet Geometridae

Xanthorhoe spadicearia (Denis & Schiff., 1775)

Description: Wingspan 24-27mm. Adults are usually pale grey often with very little red in the dark central band.

Similar Species: This species often looks similar to the red form of the Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet X. ferrugata, but the outer line of the central band is usually white; the inner band does not have a notch at the costa. Needs close examination to confirm identification.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Early May to mid-August.

Status: Widely distributed but local. Most of the recent records are from Garvary, Eshywulligan and Carrick Lough, Fermanagh. It was also taken recently from Rathlin Island, Antrim and the Mourne Mountains in Down. Despite being described by Baynes as common, this species seems to be rather scarce. Since it resembles the red-banded form of the Dark-barred Twin-spot Carpet X. ferrugata some of the records may be misidentifications of this species.

Ecology: Recorded from a variety of habitats in N. Ireland particularly woodland and upland habitats.The larvae can be found from July to September on bedstraws Galium spp. and probably other low-growing herbaceous plants.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 1724 Agassiz number: 70.051

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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