Bordered Pug (Eupithecia succenturiata)

This is a pug that is easy to identify, an exception in pugs. It has a white central patch on the forewings and in it, near the front edge of the wing, a clearly marked black spot. The first part of the body is white, followed by a brown part that runs all the way to the tail, which is white. There is a form however that is clearly brown and in which the central patch is grey in stead of white. The clearly marked spot however is at the same place and usually just as striking. In this form the tail lacks the white ending. In some other rarer forms the entire body is white except for a brown ring at the border between thrax and abdomen, but these are scarce. Reaching a wingspan of some 20 to 24 mm this is a very small Geometer, but a rather large pug.

The caterpillar of the Bordered Pug is greyish brown to reddish brown with some dark diamond shaped markings on the back and a wavy line along the sides. It mainly lives on Mugwort, but is seen on other low plants occasionally and eats the flowers as well. During daytime it rests on the ground or the lowest part of the host plant. The caterpillar is very similar to the caterpillar of the Tawny Speckled Pug. The larvae of the latter are found on Sneezewort, Yarrow and other plants and never eat flowers. Caterpillars on Mugwort usually are the Bordered Pug's.

The Bordered Pug has only one generation a year and is a typical summer species, on the wing in July and August mainly. The first may appear by the end of May, though. Is attracted to light. Is on the wing not just at night, but also at dawn and loves to visit flowers, even in gardens. A very common species all over Europe, including the British Isles. Becomes scarcer northwards, but does occur as far north as the Arctic Circle.