Common in grassland, woodland rides and gardens throughout the British Isles. Widespread and common in Hampshire and on the Isle of Wight. Wingspan 32-40 mm. Confusion species include Smoky Wainscot M. impura
, which see, and Mathew's Wainscot M. favicolor
, which occurs only in saltmarshes from Hampshire to Suffolk. Larva feeds on various grasses, including Tufted Hair-grass, Annual Meadow-grass, Common Couch and Cock's-foot.