The Vapourer - Orgyia antiqua

    Alternative names
    Vapourer Moth

    Wingspan 25-30 mm. Males are chestnut brown with a white spot on each wing. The females are virtually wingless, an attribute normally associated with winter-emerging species.

    Identification difficulty

    Urban gardens and parks, open woodland, fens, hedgerows, heathland and moorland.

    When to see it

    An unusual species in many ways, the males fly during the day. The adults are out from July to September, sometimes October in the south.

    Life History

    The female lays her eggs on what remains of the pupal cocoon, which then overwinter. When hatched, the very hairy caterpillars feed on a range of deciduous trees and shrubs.

    UK Status

    The species is fairly common, especially in suburban habitats, over much of Britain, but more so in the south. In a recent survey to determine the status of all macro moths in Britain this species was classified as common.

    VC55 Status

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

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

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

    UK Map