Swallow-tailed Moth - Ourapteryx sambucaria


Wingspan 40 to 50 mm. A spectacular species and one of our largest Geometrids. The wings are pale yellow marked with darker lines.

Identification difficulty

Woodland, scrub, hedgerows, parks and gardens.

When to see it

Being strictly nocturnal and having quite a short emergence period from late june and throughout July, it is not often encountered by the non-enthusiast. There is occasionally a second brood when conditions are favourable.

Life History

The larvae feed on a number of trees and shrubs, but prefer Ivy.

UK Status

Reasonably common in Britain, except for northern Scotland where it is local or absent. In a recent survey to determine the status of all macro moths in Britain this species was classified as common.

VC55 Status

Fairly common in Leicestershire and Rutland. L&R Moth Group status = A (common and resident)

70.243 BF1922

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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