Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Local

Local Status: Very rare and very local resident.

Local Record: Grade 4   See here for explanation

Flight time: Two generations, Apr-May, Aug-Sep.

Forewing: 13-18mm.

Foodplant: Aspen, poplars, sallows and willows.

Regional breakdown:

Year first recorded201518422009
Year last recorded201518702014
Number of records124
Number of individuals114
Unique positions112
Unique locations112
Adult records114
Immature records010

For the county, we have a total of 7 records from 4 sites. First recorded in 1842.


05. Chocolate-tip.
© David Ashton
2019 Chocolate-tip 04
© Damian Money
2019 Chocolate-tip 03
© Damian Money
2019 Chocolate-tip 02
© Dave Williamson 15th May 2009
2019 Chocolate-tip 01
© Alan Miller

Species Account

Sutton & Beaumont, 1989: Not recorded since Porritt (1883-86) and then only from York in 1842. (incorrect - see below) However, this species is still found in mid Lincolnshire (Duddington & Johnson, (1983) so there is still a chance it could be found in Yorkshire again.

Argus 58, 2009: One of the moths of the year, trapped and photographed in the south of the county. This attractive species of poplars and willows has not been seen in Yorkshire since one in the York area in 1842. It is well established in mid-Lincolnshire and numbers are building up in Cheshire, so our moth may have come from one of these populations.
VC63. Old Moor RSPB, 9.8.2009 (CDi, JWr). NEW VICE-COUNTY RECORD.

Current status (CHF, 2011): The account in Sutton and Beaumont is a little sketchy. In fact Porritt's lists mention records in 1842 and 1870. Robert Clark mentions the species "within five or six miles of York" in a list of moths from 1842 (The Entomologist, Feb 1842) and William Prest notes (Entomologist's Monthly magazine 7:256) "Towards evening we began our return to old Ebor and on the way found a few larvae of C. curtula and reclusa in spun-together aspen leaves" - this took place on 17.7.1870. Clostera reclusa was an old name for Small Chocolate-tip so larvae of both species were found together. William Prest is listed as finding Small Chocolate-tip at Askham Bog so perhaps this was the site. The other likely site is Strensall Common.

The population in the south of England has been doing well with expansion into Cheshire recently, and there are also plenty of recent records from Lincolnshire, so one trapped at Old Moor Wetlands in 2009 may have come from one of these populations.

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