This species was given the common name 'Brighton Wainscot' because one of the first British specimens was caught in Brighton in 1855 (3). Adults are yellowish-white in colour, with streaky forewings and paler, more uniform hind-wings (4). The caterpillars are pale green in colour with a yellow head (3).
The Brighton Wainscot is a single brooded species, and adults fly between late July and mid-August. The overwintering stage is the egg (1), which is laid inside the outer leaves of stems of grasses or cereal crop plants such as wheat (3). The caterpillars are present from April to the beginning of June feeding on wheat, oats, barley and rye (2), and the pupal stage occurs underground (3).
This moth has always been restricted to central areas of southern Britain in the UK (2). It has suffered a marked decline since 1980, and is now extremely rare (5). Elsewhere it is known in central and southern Europe (2).
The Species Action Plan for the Brighton Wainscot aims to maintain the current known populations. Suggested measures include suitable habitat management at all occupied sites, and the incorporation of the needs of this species into agri-environment scheme prescriptions. Survey work and research into the precise requirements of this species are also important (2).
These schemes allow the government to compensate farmers for using methods that benefit the environment. The two main initiatives in the UK are the Countryside Stewardship Scheme and Environmentally Sensitive Areas. Since October 2000 these have formed part of the England Rural Development Programme (EDRP), administered by DEFRA, the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs. See http://www.defra.gov.uk/erdp/erdphome.htm for more on these initiatives.
Stage in an insect's development, when huge changes occur that reorganise the larval form into the adult form. In butterflies the pupa is also called a chrysalis.
(Also known as 'univoltine'). Insect life cycle that takes 12 months to be complete, and involves a single generation. The egg, larva, pupa or adult over winters as a dormant stage.
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