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 aeneofasciella (Herrich-Schäffer, 1855)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Nepticula aeneofasciella Herrich-Schäffer 1855: 353.
Type locality: Switzerland, Zürich
Type: Syntypes : Switzerland, Zürich, June 1854, in coll. ? (Nieukerken 2014)

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Nepticula aeneofasciata Frey 1856


, schematic      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: . "Wingspan: 4.5-5.5 mm. Head: frontal tuft and vertex black; collar black; scape white; antenna two-thirds length of forewing, dark grey. Forewing: shining dark bronzy, suffused with purple, violet and dark blue; with two indistinct, shining golden fasciae of varying width, one at one-third and one at two-thirds; terminal cilia dark grey. Hindwing and cilia grey. Abdomen dark grey, lustrous." (Nieukerken 2014).

. "Wingspan: 4.5-5.5 mm. Antenna slightly shorter than in male." (Nieukerken 2014).


The species inhabits the greater part of Europe except Iceland and southern Europe (Karsholt & Nieukerken 2014). It is absent in Siberia, the eastern Palaearctic region and in North America (Dubatolov 2009, anonymous 2014, Hodges et al. 1983). Vertically, records have been documented up to 1750 m a.s.l. in the Alps (Kurz & Kurz 2014).


S. aeneofasciella was found on poor pastures and meadows (Kurz & Kurz 2014), preferably in somewhat shady situations. The imagines fly in two generations in central Europe and southern Scandinavia (with tenanted mines in June-July and from second half of September to first half of October), but only in one generation in northern Scandinavia (Nieukerken 2014).

Stages in development:

Mine on Potentilla erecta: Salzburg, Flachgau, Strobl, Thoralm, 1990.09.29, leg. Marion & Michael Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz Detail from previous picture: Salzburg, Flachgau, Strobl, Thoralm, 1990.09.29, leg. Marion & Michael Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz Mine on Potentilla erecta: Salzburg, Radstädter Tauern, Großarltal, Grund, way to the Loosbühelalm, 2005.10.09  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

"Egg: on lower surface of leaf.

Larva: pale greenish yellow. Mine: first part of mine very narrow, approximately 3 cm long, and usually following the margin or the main vein; frass in a very thin black central line; second part of mine a wide blotch, often occupying the entire leaf, with frass irregularly dispersed. Cocoon: pale brown." (Nieukerken 2014). The larvae have been found feeding on Agrimonia eupatoria and Potentilla erecta (Kurz & Kurz 2014), Nieukerken (2014) lists as host plants Agrimonia, Fragaria and Potentilla ssp.


-genitalia, schematic -genitalia, schematic    
Picture from: Kurz Michael (redrawn from Johansson et al. 1990)
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael (redrawn from Johansson et al. 1990)
Detailed view

Genitalia. "Vinculum short; anterior margin with shallow emargination. Uncus very broad, with deep medial and paramedial notches. Gnathos with lateral arms and anterior process forming a large rectangular plate; horns well separated at base. Valva long, inner lobe broadly curved; distal process short and blunt. Transtilla with long transverse bar and short and distinct sublateral processes. Juxta present. Aedeagus about as long as genital capsule; with 3-4 strong cornuti with broad bases and some small spines near tip, proximal part with about 15 strong close-set cornuti." (Nieukerken 2014).

Genitalia. "Corpus bursae large with sparse, fine pectinations. Vestibulum cone-shaped, relatively small. Accessory sac markedly smaller than corpus bursae. Ductus spermathecae broad, sclerotized along one side only, proximal part with spines. Apophyses strong, posteriores and anteriores of subequal length." (Nieukerken 2014).


In northern Europe, S. aeneofasciella may be mistaken externally only for Stigmella pretiosa (Heinemann, 1862), which also has two fasciae on the forewing. Nevertheless, they can easily be separated by the colour of head, which is yellow in S. pretiosa and black in S. aeneofasciella. In the male and female genitalia, S. aeneofasciella is quite similar to Stigmella stelviana (Weber, 1938) (Nieukerken 2014).

Worth knowing:


anonymous 2014. An Identification Guide of Japanese Moths Compiled by Everyone. URL: http://www.jpmoth.org [online 2014.02.10].
Dubatolov, V. V. 2014. Collection of Siberian Zoological Museum: Nepticulidae. http://szmn.sbras.ru/Lepidop/Nepticul.htm [online 2014.02.10].
Hodges, R. W. et al. 1983. Check List of the Lepidoptera of America North of Mexico. E. W. Classey, London, UK. Updated by Jean-François Landry, Don Lafontaine and Jim Troubridge [available on http://www.lepbarcoding.org/cl_nth_am.php]
Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken 2011. Nepticulidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 2.4, http://www.faunaeur.org [online 2014.02.10].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2014. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 2014.02.10].
Nieukerken, E. J. van 2014: Nepticulidae and Opostegidae of the world. - URL: http://nepticuloidea.info/ [online 2014.02.10].

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2010.09.11
Kurz Michael: 2014.02.12
Kurz Michael: 2015.11.26
Kurz Michael: 2016.05.11
Kurz Michael: 2016.05.25
not reviewed