The larva feeds on a broad variety of grasses such as Arrhenaterum elatius or Calamagrostis sp.
Aphantopus hyperantus colonizes grasslands of all kinds, as long as they are mowed only once (rarely also twice) or are totally uncut. In limestone grasslands, Aphantopus hyperantus usually occurs only in low abundances. In wet meadows or forest clearings, however, very high abundances are possible. Thus Aphantopus hyperantus prefers wet to mesophilic habitats and avoids dry ones somewhat. This species quickly colonizes new habitats, e.g. also natural gardens.
The caterpillar overwinters quite small. I found it often during the day on the ground at the base of the grasses in the spring, or even under moss. The moths usually appear in late June and fly to August. Interestingly, they are flying earlier in the northern Alps at 1200 meters above sea level than at about 600m above sea level in the foreland, so that the larvae should presumably hibernate in more advanced larval stages in these higher elevations.
Aphantopus hyperantus has low habitat requirements and is not endangered in Central Europe. But it is not able to survive in intensive, agricultural grassland as well as in dense forests. Thus even Aphantopus hyperantus is in decline. For example, populations in Memmingen town area (Germany), which previously were common on railway embankments and similar places, are now extinct due to excessive mowing, tree plantings and installation of pathways. In the forest the darkening processes (eutrophication, dense afforestation) reduces the populations.
The distribution ranges from Northern Spain especially across Central Europe and temperate Asia to Korea. Aphantopus hyperantus lacks in Northern Scandinavia (occurs to central Sweden), central and Southern Italy, Southern Greece and as mentioned in the major part of the Iberian Peninsula.