Anania coronata belongs to the family Crambidae which includes the so called Grass Moths. This is a large Family with 140+ species recorded in Britain alone.
A large micro moth with a 22-26mm wingspan(1), which is easily identifiable. On the wing May-Sep.
It’s place in the Garden (Visitor/Lured)
The larva/caterpillars feed on a handful of named food plants, many of which are associated with gardens, such as Lilac, Privet, and Viburnums. Although the main plant seems to be Elder(2), which gives rise to one of its common names Elderberry Pearl. The larva form a feeding web on the underside of the leaf.
All stages of a moths development are subject to a wide range of predators. Including small mammals, birds and amphibians. Other invertebrates are also a major threat, including dragonflies, beetles, lacewing and wasps. As such whilst many view certain caterpillars as a pest, these small packets of protein help support a wide array of other beneficial and interesting species. Moths are of course interesting in their own right and are very welcome in the Garden.
How to encourage the species to your garden
Current distribution maps place this species across much of England and Wales, but missing from most of Scotland (2). It is a common species and due to the wide variety of species it feeds upon, there is a reasonable chance of this species being present in urban areas and if you have or are willing to introduce its food plants you may well have a resident from time to time.
Alternatively, you can lure moths to you by leaving a secure window open and a light on during the warmer months, or better still invest in a moth trap. Even if you don’t see this species, you may be visited by many other interesting species.
- UK Moths: Species Account Page. https://www.ukmoths.org.uk/species/anania-coronata/ – Accessed online 18th December 2022
- Sterling, P & Parsons, M (2012): Bloomsbury Wildlife Guides: Field Guide to the Micro moths of Great Britain and Ireland. Bloomsbury Publishing Ltd