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Sword-grass
Xylena exsoleta (Linnaeus, 1758)
Noctuidae: Xyleninae
2242 / 73.208

Similar Yorkshire Species
Red Sword-grass
Xylena vetusta
Golden-rod Brindle
Xylena solidaginis
Forewing: 24-29mm.
Flight: Sept-April. (hibernates)
Foodplant:   Herbaceous plants and low woody plants
Red List: Least Concern (LC)
GB Status: Nationally Scarce
Former Status: Nationally Scarce B
Verification Grade:  Adult: 3

Yorkshire Status: Extinct.

Sword-grass has been lost from the south and east of its range in a dramatic decline and is now only found in Scotland and the Isle of Man. This is a huge change from Porritt's time when he described it as "generally common" in 1886 and "throughout the county and in many districts in abundance" in 1907. It was certainly much more common than Red Sword-grass at that time. The last documented Yorkshire record was at Bellflask in 1999 but it was not photographed and no specimen was kept so this must be regarded as unconfirmed. The record before this was at Harrogate Sewage Farm in 1982 but again we have no specimen to verify this. It if does reappear in Yorkshire, it will be as a migrant.

Sutton & Beaumont, 1989: This species has declined seriously over the whole country since the middle of the century with no obvious cause (Skinner, 1984). There are few recent Yorkshire records.

Retained Specimen / Photograph will be Required.

Recorded in 34 (17%) of 200 10k Squares.
First Recorded in 1846.
Last Recorded in 1999.
Additional Stats

Latest 5 Records
Date#VC10k Area
09/04/1999164SE27 - Kirkby Malzeard
1984162NZ51 - Middlesbrough
01/06/1982164SE35 - Harrogate / Knaresborough
1982+64SE35 - Harrogate / Knaresborough
01/01/1980 to 31/12/1989+61TA14 - Brandesburton
Further info: Xylena exsoleta
 
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