Insects of Britain and Ireland: the genera of Lepidoptera-Noctuidae

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Mesapamea Heinicke


Adults. Head rough. Eyes glabrous; not ciliated. Tongue well developed.

Wingspan 28–35 mm. Thorax coloured like the forewings, the abdomen like the hindwings. Forewings light to dark or reddish brown, or brown on an ochreous or creamy background; ochreous, or light brown, or brown, or reddish brown; neither green nor greenish tinged; neither purplish nor rosy marked or tinged; complexly patterned; the patterning well marked to obscure; reniform defined; orbicular defined to undefined; claviform defined to undefined. Hindwings fuscous, or grey; plain, or terminally darkened; with a clear discal mark, or without a clear discal mark; without transverse lines; exhibiting vein 5. Vein 5 of the hindwings weak; arising nearer to vein 6 than to vein 4. Middle tibiae without spines. Posterior tibiae without spines. Abdomen crested.

Living adults found July and August.

Larvae, pupae. Larvae not conspicuously hairy; posteriorly tapered; feeding on grasses, also Luzula; pupating in the soil.

British representation. 3 species (2 adventives); South-east England, Central-southern England, South-west England, English Midlands, Northern England, Southern Scotland, Northern Scotland, Wales, and Ireland (common); didyma* (Lesser Common Rustic), remmi* (Remm’s Rustic, one 1989 record), secalis (Common Rustic).


Illustrations. • Mesapamea secalis (Common Rustic, light and melanic: photos). • M. secalis (Common Rustic), with 7 related genera: Newman. • M. secalis, with Cuculliinae, Amphipyrinae and Noctuinae: Kirby 40.

To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. Insects of Britain and Ireland: the genera of Lepidoptera-Noctuidae. Version: 8th June 2016.’.