Chamomile Shark Noctuidae

Cucullia chamomillae (Denis & Schiff., 1775)

Description: Wingspan 44-52 mm. Forewings greyish brown and pointed at the apex. The antemedian and postmedian lines are usually indistinct. Hindwings fuscous with darker veining and fringe lighter than base colour. Females are darker than males.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Mid to late May.

Status: Rare and not recorded since the early 1990s when it was taken at Ballymacormick Point and Belvoir Park, Down. The only other record is from Ballymacilrany, Antrim where it was taken by Capt W.S. Wright in the early 1950s.

Ecology: A species that has a mainly coastal distribution in Ireland, but is also found on waste ground and marginal edges of arable land inland. Adults are attracted to light and flowers, especially campions Silene spp. It will often rest by day on fence posts and tree trunks. The larvae feed throughout June and July on mayweeds Tripleurospermum and Matricaria spp. It overwinters as a pupa.

World Distribution: Throughout western Europe from Spain to southern Sweden.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 2214 Agassiz number: 73.053

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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