Dark Sword-grass - Agrotis ipsilon


Wingspan 35-50 mm. Generally fairly rich brown in colour, it is larger than similar moths and has a dark arrow shaped mark beyond the kidney mark.

Identification difficulty
Identification aids

Frequents various habitats.

When to see it

Occurring in any month between March and November, it is however most numerous between August and October and will come to light.

Life History

The larvae feed on or below the ground and at night, on various herbaceous plants and their roots. Due to its retiring nature, breeding in this country has never been reliably proven.

UK Status

One of Britain's most regular migrants, it can appear in large numbers in some years and then be relatively scarce in others and, though more frequent in the south, it can turn up almost anywhere. In a recent survey to determine the status of all macro moths in Britain this species was classified as a migrant.

VC55 Status

Fairly frequent but not common in Leicestershire and Rutland. L&R Moth Group status = B (scarce resident or restricted distribution or regular migrant)

73.327 BF2091

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map