Species Account

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Summary Data

Season (Adult / Immature):

National Status: Common

Local Status: Scarce and local, due vast majority undetermined.

Local Record: Grade G   See here for explanation

Flight time: One generation, Jul-Aug

Forewing: 12-16mm.

Foodplant: Grasses.

Regional breakdown:

Year first recorded19792003198719682009
Year last recorded20142014201420142014
Number of records17510342415
Number of individuals367284429041
Unique positions148161313
Unique locations148161412
Adult records17510342415
Immature records00000

For the county, we have a total of 258 records from 64 sites. First recorded in 1968.


73.169 Common Rustic 01
© Alan Draper

Species Account

Sutton & Beaumont, 1989: This species has been recorded as common throughout all five vice-counties. However, M. didyma (Esper) has been recently separated and it is not yet clear how the two species are distributed in the County. In 1987 four specimens caught in Wharfedale (VC64) were dissected by A.M. Riley. One proved to be M. secalis, the other three being M. didyma (WNS). Out of the Spurn 1987 catch 58 male moths were dissected, 48 proved to be secalis and only ten didyma (BRS). It is likely therefore that the two species are intermixed in most kinds of habitat but further information is needed to work out whether there is any pattern between the relative abundances of the two species in the County as a whole.

Argus 58, 2009: We receive several hundred records each year of 'Common Rustic' and 'Lesser Common Rustic'. These two species are not separable by forewing characters and should always be logged as 'Common Rustic agg.' or 'Mesapamea secalis agg.'. If the genitalia have been examined, please indicate this clearly. Genitalia determination should be done with care. The differences are slight and they are not the easiest species for beginners to dissect. It is likely that both species are common and widespread across the county. 17 'Common Rustics' from Hutton Conyers in 2009 were found to be 12 x Common Rustic and 5 x Lesser Common Rustic. It is surprising that there had been no confirmed records of either species for VC65 until both were encountered on the YNU VC65 excursion to Keld.

VC65. Keld, 24.7.2009 (CHF, JCW, DB et al.). NEW VICE-COUNTY RECORD.


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