Gold Spot Noctuidae

Plusia festucae (Linnaeus, 1758)

Description: Wingspan 34-46 mm. A rather distinctive moth that is difficult to confuse with any other species. The head and patagium are orange. Forewings are golden brown with a distinct metallic sheen. There are two distinct silver-coloured blotches in the median area and a subapical patch that is pointed and curves inwards towards the central area of the wing. Hindwings greyish brown with fine dark veining.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Late May to mid-September

Status: Common and widespread throughout all counties including Rathlin Island.

Ecology: A brightly coloured species associated mainly with damp woodland, fens and bogs, where it is commonly encountered at light. The adults are occasionally discovered by day usually at rest among low-growing plants. The larvae feed during July and August on various marshland grasses.

World Distribution: Similar distribution to the Burnished Brass in western Europe.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 2439 Agassiz number: 73.022

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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