Butterfly Conservation: Company limited by guarantee, registered in England (2206468)

Registered Office: Manor Yard, East Lulworth, Wareham, Dorset, BH20 5QP

Charity registered in England & Wales (254937) and in Scotland (SCO39268)

VAT No. 565 9070 16

Butterfly Conservation

Saving butterflies, moths and our environment

Cornwall Branch

British moths are in serious trouble, according to the latest research about two-thirds of UK moths are declining and about a fifth of all British moths are losing numbers sharply enough to cause conservationists concern. Moths are seen as a good indicator of the general health of the environment, as different species occupy most types of habitat.


More information on moths can be found on the main Butterfly Conservation website.

Cornwall Moth Group is an independent group of volunteer enthusiasts, studying and recording British moths and migrant moths in the Cornwall. They work closely with Butterfly Conservation, both locally and nationally.

If you need help identifying a moth then the main Butterfly Conservation website may be able to help you. Click here to access the help pages.

Identify moths

Moths in Cornwall

Species spotlight

Cornwall Moth Group

Moths Count aims to encourage interest in moths throughout the UK and to run the National Moth Recording Scheme to improve knowledge and conservation of the 900+ species of larger moths.

Moths Count

Organised by Atropos and Butterfly Conservation, Moth Night is the annual celebration of moth recording throughout Britain and Ireland by enthusiasts with local events aimed at raising awareness of moths among the general public.

Moth Night

Facebook page here.

A group dedicated to moth lovers across Cornwall, started by bioscience and Marine & Natural History Photography students from EcoSoc at Combined Universities in Cornwall. This group is to share news from moth traps, get help on ID and general moth chat!

Cornish Moths Facebook

The Garden Moth Scheme

This is a scheme for those who wish to get more actively involved with regular recording and learning about moths using a moth trap. All you need to take part in this survey is enthusiasm, a moth trap and a field guide. You just need to count the numbers of common moths you see in your moth trap, for one night every week from March to November. The list of moths to count consists of about 200 species, common in your area. Those that are difficult to identify are intentionally left out. This means that the GMS is open to recorders of all abilities. If you think you want to get involved go visit the website and don’t forget the facebook page where there is plenty of willing helpers for newcomers on identification and general advice. In case you are wondering what a moth trap is, its simply a tool for attracting, catching, identifying and releasing moths unharmed back into their natural environment.

Parsnip Moth Depressaria radiella


A common species, at this time of year the Parsnip Moth caterpillar can be seen in the tops of hogweed and parsnip (Pastinaca sativa). It eats the flowers and seeds and pulls them together bound with silk, hiding inside. It pupates in the stem of the same plant emerging in September.

Photo © CBC

Parsnip Moth caterpillar