The descriptive text, below the map, is from the Cornish Red Data Book (2009). The map on this web page depicts the organisms distribution and shows the records made pre-2000 and those made since.
Range & Status
Restricted to heathlands in Cornwall, Dorset, Wiltshire, Hampshire and Surrey (with single records for Devon and the Isle of Wight). Various subspecies occur on different habitat types in Europe.
In Cornwall apparently confined to a small section of heathland on The Lizard at Goonhilly Downs, the last definitely recorded in 1981. The Cornish site is isolated by over 150 miles from the other British sites, which are in two clusters. Recent surveys (in 2008) found no evidence that this species still survives here. A 1984 record at Porthleven might have been of a migrant (Bretherton & Chalmers-Hunt, 1985).
Habitat & Ecology
The larvae feed on Cross-leaved Heath Erica tetralix and other heathers and sometimes Bog Asphodel Narthecium ossifragum . The adults fly in sunshine in June, July and August, depending on season.
Heath & Emmet (1983) state that heath fires in 1976 seriously reduced populations of this species in some areas.
The single known Cornish site is on a National Nature Reserve. A UK BAP priority
I.J. Bennallick, S. Board, C.N. French, P.A. Gainey, C. Neil, R. Parslow, A. Spalding and P.E. Tompsett. eds. 2009. Red Data Book for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. 2nd Edition.Croceago Press.
The Cornish Red Data Book Project was led by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Federation for Biological Recorders (CISFBR). The full text and species accounts (minus the maps) are available on the CISFBR website.