The V-Moth Geometridae

Macaria wauaria (Linnaeus, 1758)

Description: Wingspan 27-34mm. Adults have grey forewings suffused with smoky brown with black discal marks along the costa.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Unknown in N. Ireland. Skinner gives July and August as the flight period.

Status: This is evidently a rare species, which has not been seen for many years. There are old records from Derry in 1875 and 1937; Strangford Narrows, Down in 1933; Favour Royal, Tyrone in 1902; and Stewartstown, Tyrone in 1921. The lack of any recent records may suggest that it has become extinct, although suitable habitat probably still exists throughout most counties. A search of some of its former haunts may reveal undetected populations. In southern Ireland it has been recorded commonly in the past from the Dublin area. Skinner indicates it has declined in recent times throughout Britain

Ecology: A species particularly associated with mature gardens and orchards with established currant Ribes spp. bushes. Recent garden trends may have also have had an effect on its survival since few modern gardens and allotments have currant bushes. The larvae are best looked for from April until June on Red Currant R. rubrum, Black Currant R. nigrum and Gooseberry R. uva-crispa bushes. It overwinters as an egg.

World Distribution: Throughout Europe.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 1897 Agassiz number: 70.215

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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