Dwarf Pug Geometridae

Eupithecia tantillaria Boisduval, 1840

Description: Wingspan 16-19 mm. Forewings pale greyish white with darker grey crosslines and a small discal spot. There are darker patches along the costal edge of the forewing and a paler white sub-marginal line and a chequered fringe. Hindwings pale white with fine brown crosslines and a small black discal spot.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period:

Status: This species was originally considered to be rare as prior to 1990 there had been only one confirmed record from Loughgall, Armagh in the early 1980s. Since then it has been taken at a number of sites in southern counties which seems to confirm a more widespread distribution rather than an increase in its range. Recent records have come from Monmurray, Correl Glen, Cooneen and Crom Estate, Fermanagh, Gosford Forest Park, Armagh 1997, Ballynasollus and Muntober Bog, Tyrone and Bohill, Down.

Ecology: A spruce feeding species that favours conifer plantations and old estates where the foodplants are found. The larvae feed throughout July and August on spruce Picea spp. and Douglas Fir Pseudotsuga menziesii.

World Distribution: Eurasiatic; widespread throughout northern and central Europe.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 1857 Agassiz number: 70.162

Additional information:

UK Moths account

Caterpillar: 

 Thompson, R. S. & Nelson, B., 2003 (Oct 2). [In] The Butterflies and Moths of Northern Ireland
http://www.ulstermuseum.org.uk/lepidoptera/species.asp?item=5945

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