The Moths of Suffolk
1931 Peppered Moth, Biston betularia, (Linnaeus, 1758)

National Status : Common

Local Status : Resident (SMP Status 1)

Distribution and abundance : Widespread and very common

Habitats : Woodland, scrub, heathland, fens, hedgerows and gardens

Flight Period : Single-brooded; May to August

Larval foodplants : Various trees, shrubs and plants

Morley's Final Catalogue : Common everywhere, from Bentley Woods to Gorleston.- The melanic form, Doubledayaria, used to be rare and was found at Ipswich in 1895 (Mly)and 1898 (Platten), but is rapidly spreading to our rural districts (cf. Trans. i, 97 ; ii, 275, 292); Gorleston.

Wingspan details : Forewing 22-28mm, Wingspan 45-62mm

Identification

Confusion species
    AdultOak Beauty, Biston strataria

Compare confusion species
    Adult

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Ipswich, Suffolk (v.2003) © N Sherman

Flight chart
JFMAMJJASOND
8 51 100 6

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

Further Photographs

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Melanic specimen - Ipswich, Suffolk (vi.2003) © N Sherman
Green form, found at night on bramble - Ipswich, Suffolk (ix.2004) © N Sherman
Thetford (25.v.2005) © Lee Gregory
 
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Eye (29.v.2000) © Paul Kitchener
Female - Ipswich, Suffolk (vii.2005) © Neil Sherman
Beaten from oak (Quercus) - Friday Street, Suffolk (6.ix.2009) © A Prichard
 
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Melanic specimen - Ipswich, Suffolk (vii.2010) © Neil Sherman
f. carbonaria - VC25, Gorleston, Suffolk (22.vi.2010) © Brian Jones
f. insularia - VC25, Gorleston, Suffolk (24.vi.2010) © Brian Jones
 
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Found by day on young Birch regrowth - Ipswich, Suffolk (25.ix.2012) © Neil Sherman
Found by Bill Last - Balls Wood, Hertfordshire (ix.2014) © Neil Sherman
Woolpit, Suffolk (27.vi.2015) © Paul Bryant