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moth Mint Moths

Latin name:  Pyrausta aurata

Size:  Wingspan approx 18mm

Distribution:  Found in England, Wales and southern Scotland

Months seen:  May to September

Habitat:  Meadows and gardens - especially where mint, thyme or marjoram is growing

Food:  Nectar.  The caterpillars feed on mint - hence the name.

Special features:  Mint moths have purple forewings with one, two or three yellow spots across the middle.  The underwings are almost black with a yellow band running across them.

Mint moths are becoming quite common now, especially in gardens where mint is grown.  They generally fly during the daytime, but will also fly towards light at night.

There is a similar species, sometimes called the 'Common Crimson and Gold' moth Pyrausta purpuralis.  It has lighter coloured hindwings with a white band instead of yellow. Also the forewings have an almost continuous ribbon of yellow spots running across them.

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