The Moths of Suffolk
1919 Purple Thorn, Selenia tetralunaria, (Hufnagel, 1767)

National Status : Common

Local Status : Resident (SMP Status 1)

Distribution and abundance : Widespread and common

Habitats : Woodland, scrub, heathland and fens

Flight Period : Double-brooded; mid-March to May and July to August

Larval foodplants : Hazel, birches, Alder, hawthorns, oaks and other broad-leaved trees and shrubs

Morley's Final Catalogue : Considered ' rare' with us in 1890 and little noticed since that time, before which it had been found about Bentley (Ml); Swefling (Peek); Stowmarket (C); Bury (Wrt); and Brandon (Wrn). Taken at Blythburgh in 1935 (Btn) and Covehithe woods in April 1936 (Gd).

Wingspan details : Forewing 17-23mm, Wingspan 44-52mm

Identification

Confusion species
    AdultLunar Thorn, Selenia lunularia

Compare confusion species
    Adult

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Ipswich, Suffolk (iv.2003) © N Sherman

Flight chart
JFMAMJJASOND
1 31 18 100 18

Life history chart
JFMAMJJASOND
pupa pupa pupa imago ovaimago larva larvapupaimago ovalarvaimago larva pupa pupa pupa

Further Photographs

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Eye (29.iv.2000) © Paul Kitchener
Newbourne Springs, Suffolk (22.iv.2005) © Lee Gregory
Summer brood. - Ipswich, Suffolk (vii.2006) © Neil Sherman
 
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VC25, Belton 9 Acre Wood, Suffolk (25.iv.2010) © Brian Jones
Front view - spring brood - Ipswich, Suffolk (15.iv.2011) © Neil Sherman
Underside view - spring brood - Ipswich, Suffolk (15.iv.2011) © Neil Sherman
 
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Upperside view - spring brood - Ipswich, Suffolk (15.iv.2011) © Neil Sherman
Ipswich, Suffolk (15.iv.2015) © Paul Kitchener
Second brood, underside - Ipswich, Suffolk (3.viii.2015) © Neil Sherman
 
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Second brood, upperside - Ipswich, Suffolk (3.viii.2015) © Neil Sherman