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 amsella Heath, 1975

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Micropterix amsella Heath, 1975: 258
Type locality: Montenegro, Hercegnovi, Igalo
Type: Holotype : Hercegnovi, Igalo, 15.IV.1938, H.G.Amsel; (genitalia preparation GU 806 J.Heath); coll. LNK, Karlsruhe

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Micropteryx uxoria sensu Amsel 1951 nec Walsingham: 417, fig. II, 5. Missidentification.
Micropterix aureoviridella sensu Zeller, Kurz & Kurz 2002: 36. Missidentification.

Habit:

: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Christof Zeller : Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Christof Zeller : Montenegro, Niksic, Golija, 2011.06.10, leg. J. Neumayer, coll. Michael Kurz : Croatia, Mala Kapela, Ljubovo pass, 2001.06.12, leg. Renate Hausenblas und Christof Zeller, coll. Christof Zeller
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Scheme of wing pattern:

Description of adults: Examined: 7 , 27 . Forewing length: 2.9 - 3.2 mm; 3.2 - 3.9 mm. Head black-brown; vestiture of hair-like scales on the head dirty to brownish yellow; antennae dark brown, bronzy golden shining, nearly 9/10 (), respectively, 3/5 () of forewing length; thorax bronzy golden to coppery, distad purple to blueish violet; tegulae purple to blue-violet, the proximal margin bronzy golden; forewings brownish golden to purple with broad, bronzy golden inner margin reaching the medial fascia; markings ligth golden to golden, somewhat indistinctly bordered, in some populations very indistinct bronzy golden to nearly obsolete; at nearly 1/4 a moderately broad fascia from the bronzy golden inner margin to costa, often constricted at the junction to bronzy golden colouration at inner margin; at 1/2 a moderately broad to broad fascia across the whole wing width, slightly bent outwards, medially often constricted or completely interrupted; at 3/4 a big, roundish to elongate, inwardly oblique spot from costa across more than half of the wing width, mostly only slightly touching costa; the area distad of this spot may be highlighted bronzy golden; fringe bronzy golden, lighter outwards; hindwings bronzy golden, distad more or less tinged purple; fringe bronzy golden, lighter outwards; legs and abdomen dark brown, bronzy golden shining.

Distribution:

Untill recently, the species has been known only from Montenegro (Heath 1975). Karsholt & Nieukerken (2011), on the other hand, report the species only for Croatia, despite the fact that the type locality lies in Montenegro [!]. A series of females from the Mala Kapela in Croatia, that has recently been assigned to Micropterix aureoviridella (Höfner, 1898) (Zeller et al. 2002), is now regarded to belong to M. amsella (see anatomy section). Furthermore, its occurence in Bosnia and Hercegovina is very likely. M. amsella has been found at a height from about 150 - 1200 m a.s.l. so far (Kurz & Kurz 2011).

Biology:

Biotope of M. amsella: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, above Igalo, 2003.05.02 Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, above Igalo, 2003.05.02 Montenegro, Niksic, Golija, Vrh Caradje, 2011.06.10 Montenegro, Niksic, Golija, Vrh Caradje, 2011.06.10
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

In lower altitudes, M. amsella inhabits the edges of tall and dense mediterranean shrub- and woodland, where it flies syntopically with Micropterix facetella Zeller, 1851 and Micropterix myrtetella Zeller, 1850. Higher in the mountains, it lives in similar biotopes of deciduous woodland, often aggregating and feeding on flowering roses (Rosa canina agg.). Here, it may occur together with Micropterix igaloensis Amsel, 1951. A syntopic occurence of Micropterix aruncella (Scopoli, 1763) has been observed too, but both species being strictly separated from each other: M. amsella has aggregated on the flowers of roses on the wood edge, whereas several M. aruncella feed a few meters nearby in the meadow around Plantago media. The imagines are on the wing from April till June, depending on the altitude (Heath 1975, Kurz & Kurz 2011).

Stages in development:

The early stages are unknown.

Anatomy:

-genitalia, prep.-no. 958, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Niksic, Golija, Vrh Caradje, 2011.06.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, prep.-no. 959, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, preparation in caustic potash, prep.-no. 960, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, permanent preparation, prep.-no. 960, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   
-genitalia, prep.-no. 745, M. Kurz: Croatia, Mala Kapela, Ljubovo, 2001.06.12, leg. Hausenblas & Zeller, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, receptaculum seminis in higher magnification, prep.-no. 960, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   

Genitalia. Uncus fairly long, moderately broad, with rounded tip; accessory claspers moderately long, broadly rounded, along the margin at the inner surface with a row of about 12 thin, moderately long stout setae, the anterior ones distinctly L-shaped; proximal to the first row, a second, irregular row of about 8 very short, stout setae; valves not very long, constricted medially, the posterior 2/5 of their length club-shaped and bent upwards; valves postbasally with a group of short stout setae at the inner surface and 2-3 irregular rows of short to moderately long, stout and straight setae at the inner surface of the club-shaped distal end.

Genitalia. Sclerites of segment 8 slightly reduced and somewhat modified in shape; sclerites of segment IX reduced, forming a complete, sclerotized ring of nearly equal width; in specimens from the Mala Capela (Croatia), the sclerotization of the dorsal part is reduced; terminal papillae distinctly sclerotized, forming two distinct platelets; receptaculum seminis moderately short, somewhat constricted proximal to the onset of the ductus seminalis, the proximal half slightly bag-like inflated; receptaculum seminis distinctly striated.

Diagnosis:

M. amsella : Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, coll. Christof Zeller M. aureoviridella : Salzburg, Pongau, Hochkönig, Kaserfeld-Mandlwand, 1750 m, 1994.07.02, coll. Michael Kurz M. facetella : Croatia, Dalmatia, near Dubrovnik, Cilipi, Komaji, 2003.05.03, leg. Christof Zeller & Michael Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. mansuetella : Bavaria, Oberpfalz, Regensburg, Bodenwöhr, 2003.05.18, leg. Andreas Segerer and Christof Zeller, coll. Christof Zeller
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
M. amsella -genitalia, prep.-no. 958, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Niksic, Golija, Vrh Caradje, 2011.06.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. aureoviridella -genitalia, prep.-no. 778, M.Kurz: Salzburg, Hohe Tauern, Habachtal, near Gasthaus Enzian, 2004.07.17, coll. Michael Kurz M. facetella -genitalia, prep.-no. 956, M. Kurz: Croatia, Dalmatia, near Dubrovnik, between Trsteno and Majkovi, 2003.05.03, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. mansuetella -genitalia, prep.-no. 788, M. Kurz: Bavaria, Oberpfalz, Regensburg, Bodenwöhr, 2003.05.18, leg. Renate Hausenblas, Christof Zeller, coll. Michael Kurz
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
M. amsella -genitalia, prep.-no. 960, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. aureoviridella -genitalia, prep.-no. 810, M.Kurz, permanent preparation: Osttirol, Glocknergruppe, Kals, Moar Alm, 1800 - 2000 m, 2002.06.27, leg. Helmut Deutsch, coll. Michael Kurz M. facetella -genitalia, prep.-no. 957, M. Kurz: Montenegro, Herceg-Novi, Igalo, 2003.05.02, leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. mansuetella -genitalia, prep.-no. 760, M. Kurz: without data, coll. Zoologische Sammlung des Bayrischen Staates, Munich
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Externally, M. amsella is very similar to Micropterix aureoviridella (Höfner, 1898). Although the latter species has not been found so far in the Dinarian mountains or in Montenegro, an overlapping of the distribution ranges of the two species cannot be excluded. Micropterix facetella Zeller, 1851, which may fly sympatrically with M. amsella, also is quite similar, although it normally has a more purple ground colour and a well developed, small costal spot at 3/5. In the male and female genitalia, M. amsella is well characterized and readily distinguishable from both mentioned species.

Phylogeny: Phylogenetically, M. amsella is a highly interesting species. In both the male and female genitalia, the species shows a close similarity to Micropterix mansuetella Zeller, 1844. The setae on the accessory claspers in the male genitalia are not specialized and are also L-shaped, although much thinner than in M. mansuetella. Most remarkable, the female genitalia also show a completely sclerotized segment IX ring, which is assumed to be a plesiomorphic character. This character may link the genus Micropterix Hübner, 1825 to Paramartyria Issiki, 1931 and other allied genera from the eastern Palaearctic region.

Worth knowing:

Sources:

Amsel, H. G. 1951. Una raccolta di microlepidotteri della Dalmazia meridionale. Redia 36: 411-422
Heath, J. 1975. The ammanella complex of the genus Micropterix Hübner [1825] (Lepidoptera: Zeugloptera, Micropterigidae). – Entomologist’s Gazette 26: 253–258.
Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken 2011. Micropterigidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 2.4., http://www.faunaeur.org [online 01 July 2011].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2011. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 01 July 2011].
Zeller-Lukashort, H. C., M. E. Kurz & M. A. Kurz 2002. Neue Funddaten von Arten der Gattung Micropterix Hübner, [1825] (Lepidoptera: Micropterigidae). – Zeitschrift der Arbeitsgemeinschaft Österreichischer Entomologen 54: 35–38.

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2009.02.19
Kurz Michael: 2009.04.02
Kurz Michael: 2009.10.30
Kurz Michael: 2009.11.24
Kurz Michael: 2010.06.30
Kurz Michael: 2011.07.01
Kurz Michael: 2011.12.22
Kurz Michael: 2012.02.18
Kurz Michael: 2012.02.25
Kurz Michael: 2012.02.26
Kurz Michael: 2012.03.22
Kurz Michael: 2012.03.23
Document reviewed by:
not reviewed: 2012.03.23
Document released by:
Kurz Michael: 2012.03.23

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