Tawny Shears Noctuidae

Hadena perplexa (Denis & Schiff., 1775)

Description: Wingspan 27-36 mm. In coastal areas of Ireland this species is represented by the darker subspecies capsophila which is called the Pod Lover. Adults of this suspecies are darker appearance than those of the nominate form. Forewings are dark blackish brown; with stigmata outlined with a fine whitish line. The crosslines are indistinct and the subterminal line is wavy and pale in colour. Hindwings are pale fuscous, darker towards the terminal border.

Key Identification Features:

Sets:  male upperside

Flight Period: Mid-May to mid-July.

Status: Confined to the coast of Down and north Antrim including Rathlin Island.

Ecology: A coastal species found on calcareous soils throughout Ireland. Adults appear in small numbers at light and visit flowers, especially campion Silene spp. and Red Valerian Centranthus ruber. The larvae are nocturnal and feed during July and August on various species of campion, particularly the white-flowered variety. It overwinters as a pupa

World Distribution: Throughout western Europe to Scandinavia.

Bradley & Fletcher number: 2167 Agassiz number: 73.286

Additional information:

UK Moths account


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