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

Stigmella nivenburgensis (Preissecker, 1942)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Nepticula nivenburgensis Preissecker, 1942: 209.
Type locality: Austria, Klosterneuburg
Type: Lectotype : Austria, Klosterneuburg, Salix alba, e.l. 13.v.1942, leg. Preissecker (cotype, mus. vind. 112); in coll. NHMW, Vienna.

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Stigmella populnea Kemperman & Wilkinson, 1985: 13. Type locality: Japan, Hokkaido, Sapporo. Junior subjective synonym.


Description of adults: Examined: Original description (Preissecker 1942). Wing exspanse: 4.2-5.0 mm. Frontal tuft of head ochreous-yellow; collar, eyecaps and labial palpi yellowish-white; antennae yellowish-grey, in more than 1/2 of forewing lenght, in somewhat shorter; thorax and tegulae dark olive brown; forewings dark olive brown, in basal part with weak brassy shimmer, in distal part darker with violet tinge; medial fascia somewhat distad of 1/2, yellowish-white with weak shimmer, sometimes very narrow, broadened towards inner margin; fringe olive brown, whitish outwards; hindwings light grey, fringe alike; legs yellowish, with silvery glance; abdomen olive brown on upperside, yellowish with silvery glance on underside.


The species is distributed throughout the Palaearctic region, from western Europe to Japan. Following Johansson et al. (1990), it is found in Europe, preferably in south-eastern Europe: Greece, Hungary, northern Italy, Austria and Poland. It is furthermore known from most of the Balkan countries, Lithuania, the central part of European Russia, but also from Germany and Spain (Nieukerken 2013). No records are available about vertical distribution.


In central Europe, the species occurs in two generations per year: Imagines emerge, when breed, from early April till early July and from the end of July till mid August. Larvae are found under natural conditions from mid July till early August and from late September till mid October (Preissecker 1942).

Stages in development:

Description of early stages following Preissecker (1942):

Egg. The egg is laid on the upper-, rarely also the underside of a leaf.

Larva. The larva is golden yellow with light brown head and green gut. It feeds venter upwards in Populus nigra (Japan) and various species of Salix (Europe): Salix alba, Salix triandra, Salix babylonica, Salix fragilis and Salix × rubens (lepiforum 2020). The larva pupates in a light yellowish brown to dark reddish brown cocoon. The mine is a long narrow corridor, without widening at the end. The early mine, which is hardly visible in the first part, mostly follows the midrib. It may also be irregular or even bent. The end of the mine is mostly bent towards the leaf margin, although not reaching it. The frass leaves clear margins, but covers at least half of the mine width. The frass line is linear, but often interrupted or dissolved in elongated heaps. The larva leaves the leaf on the underside.


In forewing colouration, S. nivenburgensis closely resembles Stigmella luteella (Stainton, 1857), but the latter has shorter antennae and a more dull, often incomplete or indistct forewing fascia (Preissecker 1942). The mines can easily be distinguished from those of Stigmella obliquella (Heinemann, 1862) by the exit slit of the larva, which is on the underside in S. nivenburgensis, but on the upperside in S. obliquella.

Worth knowing:


Johansson, R., E. S. Nielsen, E. J. van Nieukerken & B. Gustafsson 1990. The Nepticulidae and Opostegidae (Lepidoptera) of North West Europe. Fauna Entomologica Scandinavica, vol. 23, 2 parts, 739 pp., 1122 [54 col.] figures.
Nieukerken, E. J. van 2013. Nepticulidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 2017.06. URL: https://fauna-eu.org [online 2020.05.26].
Preissecker, F. 1942. Zwei neue Nepticula-Arten aus dem Gebiete des heutigen Reichsgaues Wien. Zeitschrift des Wiener Entomologen-Vereines 27: 208-211.
lepiforum 2020. Bestimmungshilfe für die in Europa nachgewiesenen Schmetterlingsarten. http://lepiforum.de/lepiwiki.pl [online 2020.05.26].

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2020.05.25
Kurz Michael: 2020.05.27
not reviewed