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)

72.017 BF2026

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Species group:
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
21/08/1950 (Wesley, Isaac)
Last record:
25/10/2023 (Grove, Tim)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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