Species Of The Week Number 10: Common Plume Moth

In 2021 a remarkable 1319 species of moth were recorded across Yorkshire, indicative of a complex and diverse group.

Plume moths look (and fly) more like a type of fly than a type of moth and there are 34 different species of those in the UK. They are named for their slim, feathery wings, which they hold out almost at right angles to the body when at rest.

The Common Plume Moth is also unusual as you can see it at anytime of year - I disturbed this one (see picture on our Bioblitz page) when pruning back a Buddleia earlier this week. Many moths are firmly linked to specific food plants and for the Common Plume Moth its plant is Bindweed - of which I have plenty despite my best attempts at getting rid of it!

I'm sure you know that moths go through four life stages: egg, caterpillar, pupae and adult. Common Plume Moth caterpillars are greenish-yellow with a green band, and a narrow broken yellow line running down the middle.

Another species that uses bindweed is the White Plume Moth - pop over to our Instagram page for a picture of that, it is very ghostly.

We are currently trying to fundraise for some moth traps which will help us document many more moth species of the Valley in the Spring and Summer next year. If you want to get involved in this part of the Bioblitz then let me know. I am also looking for a moth expert to help!

Posted by clunym clunym, November 30, 2022 12:23 PM

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