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Chalk carpet moth fact file

Chalk carpet moth description

GenusScotopteryx Chalk carpet moth biology

Adults of this single-brooded moth fly at night Chalk carpet moth range

Largely confined to chalk and limestone areas, and is most common in southern England as a result. From the Midlands northwards and in Wales it has a more local distribution as far as Yorkshire and formerly County Durham Chalk carpet moth habitat

Inhabits unimproved calcareous grasslands, with a preference for sites with exposed rock and bare patches that are grazed short Chalk carpet moth status

Classified as Nationally Scarce in Great Britain Chalk carpet moth threats

This species is thought to have declined, factors responsible include the loss of natural grassland to agriculture and housing, or to scrub following the abandonment of sheep-grazing. This has caused fragmentation of habitat Chalk carpet moth conservation

A Species Action Plan has been produced for the Chalk Carpet moth under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (UK BAP); this plan aims to maintain the invertebrates_freshwater

Find out more

The species action plan for the Chalk Carpet is available on-line from:
Further reading on moths:
Leverton, R. (2001) Enjoying Moths. Poyser, London.
Skinner, B. (1984) Moths of the British Isles. Penguin Books, Harmondsworth



Information authenticated by Roy Leverton.



Agri-environment schemes
These schemes allow the government to compensate farmers for using methods that benefit the environment. The two main initiatives in the UK are the Countryside Stewardship Scheme and Environmentally Sensitive Areas. Since October 2000 these have formed part of the England Rural Development Programme (EDRP), administered by DEFRA, the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs. See http://www.defra.gov.uk/erdp/erdphome.htm for more on these initiatives.
Containing free calcium carbonate, chalky.


  1. Skinner, B. (1984) Moths of the British Isles. Penguin Books, Harmondsworth.
  2. UK BAP Species Action Plan (December 2001): http://www.ukbap.org.uk
  3. South, R. (1961) Moths of the British Isles. Frederick Warne and Co. Ltd, London.
  4. Pers. observation from images.
  5. Carter, D.J. and Hargreaves, B. (1986) A field guide to caterpillars of butterflies and moths. William Collins and Sons, London.
  6. Leverton, R. (2002) Pers. comm.

Image credit

Chalk Carpet  
Chalk Carpet

© David Element

David Element


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