A blood vein moth photographed in the reserve by Clive Knight

It is easy to identify: when it is at rest, with its wings held out flat, the reddish cross-lines of the fore and hind wings form a continuous band like a vein. The fringes of the wings are also pink.

Blood vein adults and larval food plants, dock and sorrel

It likes our stream-banks and damp meadows and we see it here every summer, the first brood from May to July and the second in August and September. The larvae feed on low-growing plants docks, common sorrel, and knotgrass. This is a species that overwinters as a caterpillar.

Despite being listed as common in a recent survey of British macro moths, the blood vein moth is listed as a UK BAP priority species. 

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