Belongs to: day-flying moths

Compare with: dingy skipper

Silver-Y moth Autographa gamma

Best time to see: Jun to late Oct

Key facts

A common migrant moth with distinctive Y-shaped mark on its forewings

Habitat: open countryside and gardens

Widespread across Europe, North Africa and temperate Asia


Grey-brown with small but noticeable white Y-shaped mark on forewing

Found from May until November, feeding by day and night on a wide range of flowering plants

Very active and fast-flying enough to escape the attention of most bird predators


Migrants arrive each spring and lay on a wide range of low-growing plants, including vegetable crops such as peas and lettuces

Green caterpillars with white stripes weave a silk cocoon under leaves in which to pupate

A second generation emerges in autumn but they usually do not survive the British winter

© Tony Gunton