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Photo of  faded Grass Emerald by Graeme Davis

As with many green moths Grass Emerald may fade. From a blue-green when fresh it may fade to grey.

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Geometrinae & Ennominae  

Identify moths


Quite a number of Geometer moths are called Emeralds. They are generally emerald green in colour. For fresh specimens the species are distinctive colours although it is unwise to use this to distinguish them, as with green moths generally, the colour does fade.
The relatively common species belong to 2 different sub-families of the
Geometridae :
1. Geometrinae : Grass Emerald, Large Emerald, Blotched Emerald, Common Emerald, Small Emerald
Ennominae : Light Emerald

Grass Emerald

Large Emerald

Common Emerald

Light Emerald

Small Emerald

Blotched Emerald

Small moths - Wing Length about 15mm

Medium Size - Wing Length about 18mm

Large Moths - Wing Length about 25mm


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Identify moths


The hindwings are strongly pointed in the centre of the outer edge.

The fringe on the outer edge of the wings is white with black stripes.

Forewing has a broad slightly darker central cross-band bordered by wavy white lines.

In fresh specimens the colour is a more vivid emerald green than the other Emeralds.

The forewing and hindwing have large white blotches marked with brown or orange on the trailing edge.

An irregular white cross-line near the outer edge of forewing and hindwing.

A wide cross-band across the middle of the forewing bordered by darker spiky cross-lines.

The fringe on the outer edge of the wings is plain green or white.

Hind wings less strongly pointed than in Common Emerald.

White cross-lines less wavy than in Common Emerald

Light Emerald is far paler green than fresh specimens of the other Emeralds.

Markings are similar to those of Small Emerald but Light Emerald is far larger.

Two white cross-lines on forewing and hindwing near the outer edge of the wing.
The inner one is spiky;
the outer one is dotted.

Outer edge of the wings is scalloped.