Union Rustic Pabulatrix pabulatricula
(Brahm, 1791)[Synonyms: Apamea pabulatricula]
Wingspan 32-38 mm.
This species can hardly be confused with any other. It is evidently extinct in Britain, and decreasing throughout its range abroad. Formerly, it had its British headquarters in South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, where it was locally fairly common, but was last recorded in 1919.
There are a few scattered records in other parts of Britain including Renfrewshire in Scotland, the last in Hertfordshire in 1935, which suggest it might just possibly be overlooked. It is a species of open deciduous woodland, and it is thought that felling of woodland and possibly industrial pollution probably contributed towards its decline.
Univoltine, flying in July and August. In its heyday, it could be found at rest by day on oak trunks (Simmonds, quoted in MBGBI 10: 197). It comes to sugar early in the evening, and to light.
The larva feeds on woodland grasses. Zilli et al. (2005) indicate an association with purple moor-grass (Molinia caerulea). The larva overwinters.
(Description: Barry Goater)