Common Rustic Mesapamea secalis
Common Rustic Mesapamea secalis
Adult • West Sedgemoor, Somerset • © Stuart Croft

73.169 BF2343

Common Rustic Mesapamea secalis

(Linnaeus, 1758)

Wingspan 27-30 mm.

Formerly a single species, this has now been split into a complex of three, giving Lesser Common Rustic (M. didyma) and Remm's Rustic (M. remmi) specific status.

Generally very variable, the three cannot be reliably separated without reference to their genitalia, but the very dark forms with almost white stigmata tend to be mostly didyma.

Flying in July and August, the species is very common throughout Britain and regularly comes to light.

The larvae feed inside the stems of various grasses, including cock's-foot (Dactylis glomerata) and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea).
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