Dingy Footman - Eilema griseola


Wingspan 32-40 mm. Several of the Eilema species can be difficult to tell apart, but this moth has broader, more rounded forewings than many of the others. It can be quite greyish, but a yellowish form, straminola, does occur in places.

Similar Species

Common Footman, Dingy Footman, Scarce Footman and Buff Footman are all similar but can be distinguished by shape and colour - see Identification Aids below.

Identification difficulty
Identification aids
Footman Moths

From left to right: Common Footman, Scarce Footman, Dingy Footman, Buff Footman.

Of these Common Footman is by far the commonest, and the Buff Footman probably the most scarce. The Dingy Footman shows a wide 'melonseed' shape, so stands out versus Common Footman. Even for a Dingy Footman in the yellower colour form, the shape should help separate from Buff Footman. On the Buff Footman, there is a distinct 'crease' coming from the thorax down the center of the basal part of the forewing, and in the resting posture the back end always looks 'squarer' than on the Common Footman. The Scarce Footman pretty much speaks for itself with its tightly wrapped resting posture.

Credit: Mark Skevington


Found around damp woodland, fens and sea-cliffs

When to see it

It flies in July and August

Life History

Feeds on various lichens.

UK Status

It is fairly common in the southern half of England and Wales. In a recent survey to determine the status of all macro moths in Britain this species was classified as common.

VC55 Status

Occasional in Leicestershire and Rutland. L&R Moth Group status = C (very scarce resident or rare migrant)

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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