Tinea trinotella

Alternative names
Bird's-nest Moth

Wingspan 12-18 mm. This small greyish-buff moth has three dark spots on the forewing, which give rise to its scientific name. It also sports a yellowish or orange head-tuft, resulting in its diagnostic appearance.

Identification difficulty

Found in various habitats.

When to see it

Flying at night and often visiting light-traps, the adults are at large between May and August, with possibly two generations.

Life History

The larva lives in a portable case and is quite common in birds' nests, where it feeds on detritus and food remains.

UK Status

Fairly frequent in England at least. In the Butterfly Conservation’s Microlepidoptera Report 2011 this species was classified as common.

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)

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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