N A T U R K U N D L I C H E S   I N F O R M A T I O N S S Y S T E M

Micropterix aureopennella Heath, 1986

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Micropterix aureopennella Heath, 1986: 23 - 24, fig. 8, 9
Type locality: Algeria, Algiers, Mustapha Superior
Type: Holotype : Algeria, Mustapha Superior, Algiers, 5.V.1893, Eaton, 4824; genitalia preparation J.Heath no. 183; in coll. BMNH

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:


PARATYPE: Algeria, Algier, coll. NHMW      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Scheme of wing pattern:

Description of adults: Examined: 1 (paratype), original description (Heath 1986). Forewing length: 3.5 mm, 3.6 - 4.0 mm. Head black-brown; vestiture of hair-like scales on the head whitish to pale golden yellow; antennae golden fuscous; thorax and tegulae bronzy golden; forewings deep bronzy golden to purple violet with pale golden to golden markings: At 1/4 a broad, medially somewhat constricted fascia across the whole wing width, very broad at inner margin; at 1/2 a very broad, medially kinked fascia across the whole wing width; at slightly more than 3/4 a large costal spot, sometimes extending into a broad fascia across the whole wing width, only slightly touching outer margin, proximally strongly inflated towards basis; fringe bronzy golden, whitish distally; hindwings bronzy golden to coppery; fringe bronzy golden, reddish at basis; legs and abdomen brown, golden shining.


M. aureopennella is known so far only from Algeria (Heath 1986).


Nothing is known about the biology of M. aureopennella. The adults have been found on the wing in early May (Heath 1986).

Stages in development:

The early stages are unknown.


Picture from: © Heath 1986, modified
Detailed view

Genitalia. "Uncus short and stout, completely fused with tegumen; accessory clasper very large with a convoluted apical lobe, a convoluted funnel-shaped structure, an inner row of six short, stout setae and a very large single heavily sclerotized basal, hooked tooth; between uncus and accessory clasper a dense row of long, stout, pointed setae. Clasper long, curved and spatulate with a small group of fairly short, stout setae on inner surface of distal end and two large groups of long, stout, pointed basal setae on inner surface." (Heath 1986).


Within the distribution range of M. aureopennella, there are three other species with similar wing pattern. Micropterix algeriella (Ragonot, 1889) normally has smaller fasciae than M. aureopennella. Micropterix cyaneochrysa Walsingham, 1907 has even broader fasciae, the basalmost fascia being extremely broad at the inner margin. The fascia at 1/2 is distinctly constricted medially in Micropterix purpureopennella Heath, 1986. Other similar specis, like Micropterix trifasciella Heath, 1965, do not occur in northern Africa. In the male genitalia, all mentioned species are significantly different from each other.

Phylogeny: The structure of the male genitalia is unique within the genus and does not show any resemblance to any other species.

Worth knowing:


Heath, J. 1986. The Micropterigid fauna of north Africa (Lepidoptera, Zeugloptera). Entomologistīs Gazette 37:17-32, 126.

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2008.12.10
Kurz Michael: 2010.01.09
Kurz Michael: 2010.11.09
Kurz Michael: 2012.01.06
Kurz Michael: 2012.07.13
not reviewed