Silver-ground Carpet Geometridae

Xanthorhoe montanata (Denis & Schiff., 1775)

Description: Wingspan 29-33mm. Adults are generally pale greyish white although this can vary between individuals. There is a central band which is normally light brown, this can appear like two single bands in some individuals. The forewings are suffused with pale grey towards the outer margin. The upper surface of abdomen has two small paired, but distinctive, dots on each segment.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: From Mid-may to mid-August.

Status: Widespread and commonly encountered throughout all counties including Rathlin Island.

Ecology: Found on a wide variety of habitats such as woodland rides, bogs, heaths and occasionally in mature and suburban gardens. Adults are attracted to light but appear only in small numbers. One of the most common carpets found throughout N. Ireland. The larvae can be found from August to April on Primrose Primula vulgaris, bedstraws Galium spp. and possibly other herbaceous plants. It overwinters as a larva.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 1727 Agassiz number: 70.054

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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