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Moth Peppered Moth

Peppered Moth - Photo  Copyright 2005 Ray Kelly Photo: Ray Kelly

UK Safari Tip:
Need help identifying moths? Try this fully illustrated book "Moths of the British Isles", available at - click here

Latin name: Biston betularia

Size: Wingspan approx 50 to 60mms.

Distribution: Found in most parts of the UK.

Months seen: May to August

Food: The caterpillars feed on a variety of foodplants including; lime, birch, hawthorn and rose.

Habitat: Woods, towns and gardens.

Special features: The amount of 'peppering' on the wings can be very variable. Some have darker markings.

Click for a better viewIn parts of England an all black version (melanic) can be found. This is a throwback to the industrial age of Britain when this moth would have been well camouflaged on soot blackened walls.

Click for a better viewThe caterpillars feature a deeply cleft head which looks like the end of a broken stem. They are perfectly camouflaged on rose stems. Even the legs resemble thorns.

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UK Safari Moth Section

  2006 G. Bradley. All Rights Reserved