Wingspan 12 mm - 16 mm
E. abbreviana varies greatly in the strength of its markings and darkness of colour.
It flies in June and July at dusk and night, wherever elms occur on lowland sites, throughout the British Isles. During daylight, it often sits exposed on foliage or trunks.
In April, the early instar larva eats through an elm (Ulmus spp.) bud. When the bud opens, it reveals a highly distinctive arc of holes caused by the larva, but by this time the larva has moved to a spinning made with another elm leaf. Pupation occurs in late May or early June. Field maple (Acer campestre) is also eaten (BTS).