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FOX MOTH

Macrothylacia rubi

Moth:
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Caterpillar:
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31st Aug 2011, Afon Doethie under Pen Y Gurnos, Mid Wales. Photo: © RWD
A young specimen, wide hairy black bands interspersed with narrow orange bands from the upperside.


31st Aug 2011, Afon Doethie under Pen Y Gurnos, Mid Wales. Photo: © RWD
The orange bands are interupted top dead centre. Many short hairs, fewer much longer hairs.


31st Aug 2011, Afon Doethie under Pen Y Gurnos, Mid Wales. Photo: © RWD
From the underside the pattern is reversed: wide orange bands interspersed with narrow black bands, reminiscent of black and white keys on a piano.


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Habitat is meadows, heathland, downland, open woods, parks and gardens.

The moths fly and feed between may to early july and have a wing-span of 60-70mm and found in most parts of the UK. They are mostly brownish red, hence the name.

The caterpillars can be found moving feeding on bramble and heather between June to April the following year, but are active only between june to August, thereafter they hibernate in the leaf litter.

I dentification of the caterpillars can be tricky, for not only are they not in most books, but they change colour as they grow, with young ones being black with several regularly-spaced narrow orange bands along their length and many black hairs, but older caterpillars are a reddish brown with grey hairs.


  Macrothylacia rubi  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Lasiocampidae  

FOX MOTH

Macrothylacia rubi

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