Sphingidae : Smerinthinae
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Lime Hawk-moth
Mimas tiliae

(Linnaeus, 1758) 1979 / 69.001
Photo © Ray Priestley,  Fishlake 08/05/2024

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Immature stages

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Express Record Lime Hawk-moth

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Yorkshire Status: Fairly widespread resident.

It is interesting to look at the comments in Sutton and Beaumont (below) which document the spread of this moth across the county. By 2010, it was resident as far north as mid-Northumberland and south Cumbria, but since then the advance has stalled and the distribution has remained stable. It remains not uncommon across most of the county, but is less common in upland areas. Numbers have probably dropped a little in recent years. To a certain extent its distribution is dependent on the availability of limes, but it is quite often encountered in areas without lime - the larvae will also sometimes feed on birch, alder and possibly other trees. The brown form, brunnea is occasionally seen. Just over 1% of records on the database are of this form, but the actually incidence is probably nearer 5% as many recorders do not log forms in the comments field. The distribution may have been wider in the past as there is an old record in Porritt's lists "near York" and there are also old records further north in Cumbria and Northumberland

Sutton & Beaumont, 1989: This species extended its range into the south of VC63 in the early 1950s. It was found breeding in Doncaster in 1950 by A. H. Wright and stated by G. E. Hyde to have been rare before 1955 but common in limes in the town centre from then on. Since 1975 Wright found it wherever he looked for it in the Doncaster area. The range extension has continued through the 1980s and it has now been found as far north as Ripon (VC64). It is mainly found in suburban areas where lime has been extensively planted but may also occur elsewhere on wild lime and elm and there are two records which suggest other wild food plants may also be chosen. (All Doncaster area information per PS).

Recorded in 129 (65%) of 200 10k Squares.
First Recorded in 1883.
Last Recorded in 2023.
Additional Stats

< Great Peacock  |  Eyed Hawk-moth >
Forewing: 23-39mm
Flight: May - July
Foodplant:   Limes, elms, birches and Alder.
Red List Status: Least Concern (LC)
GB Status: Common
Verification Grade:  Adult: 1
List Species Records   [Show All Latest]
Latest 5 Records
Date#VC10k Area
21/08/2023+62SE77 - Malton
17/08/2023+63SK69 - New Rossington / Austerfield
13/08/2023162SE65 - York (E)
12/08/2023+61TA03 - Beverley (S) / Cottingham
11/08/2023+63SE31 -  Wakefield (S)
  Immature   Adult   [Show Flight Weeks]
Show Details | 1990 to 2023 | 2000 to 2023 | Graph Key
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