35.029 Brachmia inornatella (Douglas, 1850)

Status and Distribution

Very local species found in East Anglia, south and south-east England where, on occasions, it has been found in good numbers.

National Status: 

Nationally Scarce A

Bradley & Fletcher no: 

Photo courtesy of UK Moths.
Photographer: Andy Beaumont
Location: Horning Hall Marshes, Norfolk

Provisional Map

Maps updated with all data received by February 2016.


    Brachmia inornatella (Photo: ukleps) Brachmia inornatella 2015 (Photo: T Hodge) Brachmia inornatella 2015 (Photo: T Hodge)


    Brachmia inornatella larva (Photo: P H Sterling)

    Dissection Group

    Foodplant and Larval Feeding Signs

    Phragmites australis (common reed).

    There are no obvious external feeding signs in the winter. In the autumn a dead larva, probably of this species, was found in a stem adjacent to leaf shoots that looked slightly withered and discoloured (M. Wall in Sterling, Wall and Langmaid, 2013).

    Brachmia inornatella feeding signs (Photo: P H Sterling

    Foodplant Map


    In fens and beds of common reed of varying sizes, possibly preferring, but not restricted to, unmanaged beds.

    Finding the Moth

    Larva: feeds and overwinters in the dead stems of common reed and amongst the leaf litter on the ground.  Carefully parted dead leaves of the shoots and decaying reed leaves on the surface of the litter layer will contain scattered pale brown frass and a little silk if a larva is present.

    Adult: flies at dusk and later comes to light placed in amongst or very close to the larval foodplant.

    Similar Species

    Could be confused with Helcystogramma lutatella but that species has a more rounded end to the forewing.

    Larval Occurrence

    Larval Occurrence

    Flight Period

    Flight Period

    Single-brooded from late May to early August.

    Earliest: 12th May 2008 (VC18).

    Latest: 11th August 2007 (VC31).