Abraxas grossulariata (Linnaeus, 1758)
Description: Wingspan 42-48mm. A highly variable species with many different forms. The wings are predominantly white marked with heavy black spotting, which is prone to much individual variation. There is a pale orange crossline running across the forewing near the outer margin. The hindwing is whiter with a row of black spots on the outer margin. Quite a variable species with many different aberrations which appear in captive-bred individuals but which are seldom encountered in the wild.
Key Identification Features:
Flight Period: Beginning of June to early September.
Status: Widespread and frequently encountered over most of N. Ireland especially in eastern counties. Also recorded from Rathlin Island, Antrim.
Ecology: A large, distinctive moth found in a wide variety of habitats particularly woodland, coastal dunes, grassland and often gardens. The larvae can be found from September to May on currant Ribes spp., Gooseberry Ribes uva-crispa, Blackthorn Prunus spinosa, Hawthorn Crataegus monogyna, Hazel Corylus avellana and possibly other trees and shrubs. It overwinters as a larva.
World Distribution: Throughout Europe as far as eastern Siberia.
Bradley & Fletcher number: 1884 Agassiz number: 70.205
UK Moths account
|Thompson, R. S. & Nelson, B., 2003 (Oct 2). [In] The Butterflies and Moths of Northern Ireland |
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