Are there sharks in Cornwall?

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Yes, you’re probably thinking Blue Shark (Prionace glauca), Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus) and Porbeagle Shark (Lamna nasus) that do frequent Cornish waters but I’m talking about these sharks that were attracted to a garden light!

The Chamomile Shark (Cucullia chamomillae) is a moth often confused with the more common moth species The Shark (Cucullia umbratica). They are best identified by the dark lines that extend into the margin of the outer edge of the forewing compared to their abrupt end at the margin in The Shark as shown below.

The Chamomile Shark is named after the the caterpillars food plant and the raised hair tufts at the back of the head which resemble a shark’s dorsal fin. This moth has a wingspan of between 19-23mm and is local to the southern and central areas of the UK where it inhabits waste ground, grassy areas, coastal areas and field set asides.

Larval food includes Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile), Scented Mayweed (Matricaria recutita) and Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium).

The extraordinary Chamomile Sharks caterpillars include a pink tripped form.

Chamomile Shark (Cucullia chamomillae)
The Shark (Cucullia umbratica)

Other Moth Sightings

Moth Galleries

Illustrated Guide to British Moths

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