Herald Noctuidae

Scoliopteryx libatrix (Linnaeus, 1758)

Description: Wingspan 44-48 mm. An attractive moth with deeply scalloped forewings resembling a withered leaf when at rest. Forewings light brown with a light orange coloured median patch. Antemedian and post median lines pale a clearly defined. There is also a small sub costal streak and a tiny white spot in the central area of the forewing. Hindwings similar in colour to the forewing, paler in the basal area.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: July to October and again after hibernation from mid-April to late June.

Status: Common and widespread in southern counties, scarcer further north.

Ecology: Found mainly in woodland and marshy areas. Adults hibernate during the winter months and reappear in early spring. Hibernation sites include old sheds, barns and outhouses. Individuals are more frequently encountered at light after hibernation which accounts for the vast majority of records. The larvae feed from June to August on willow Salix spp., poplar Populus spp. and Rowan Sorbus aucuparia. It overwinters as an adult.

World Distribution: Eurasiatic; common throughout western Europe as far north as the Arctic Circle.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 2469 Agassiz number: 72.001

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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