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A couple of years ago, I discovered through chats to local Butterfly Conservation Senior moth ecologist George that three rare moths use Dyer’s greenweed (Genista tinctoria) as their larval food plant. (There’s a Butterfly Conservation factsheet about these here.)

210619 dyers greenweed

The larvae create little homes for themselves by spinning together the leaves at the tips of Dyer’s greenweed shoots, and, yesterday, after much careful searching, I finally found a ‘spinning’ that was occupied.

George has now confirmed for me that this little beauty is the larva of the nationally scarce moth Mirificarma lentiginosella. And he writes: ‘You now join the select club of people who have seen this species in Wales: you, me, and C.G. Barrett who recorded it in Pembrokeshire in the 1800s’. As you can imagine, I am extremely pleased to have joined this select club!

210619 Mirificarma lentiginosella (3)