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

Prolyonetia cockerelli Kusnezov, 1941

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Prolyonetia cockerelli Kusnezov, 1941: 45-46, fig. 30-32.
Type locality: Baltic region
Type: Holotype : Preparation no. 12 in the collection of the palaeontological institute of the academy of sciences USSR, Moskow

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:


Original drawing () : Russia, Kaliningrad, Palmnicken, Baltic amber, coll. Michael Kurz : Russia, Kaliningrad, Palmnicken, coll. Michael Kurz  
Picture from: © Kusnezov 1941
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: Examined: Original description (), 1 . Forewing length: 2.2 mm, 2.6 mm. Head with erect, very long, hair-like scales; eyes semiglobular, 0.15 mm in diameter; maxillary palpi 5-segmented, scaled; labial palpi 3-segmented, in total about 2-times the diameter of an eye; medial segment with distant bristles in distal part; proboscis very short, length about 2-times the diameter of an eye, thick, slightly bent, not functionally; antennae about 1/3 of forewing length (), filiform, scapus much enlarged; forewing lanceolate, about 4-times as long as broad, hindwing narrow lanceolate, about 5-times as long as broad, each with pointed apex; foretibia without epiphysis; spur formula 0-2-4; abdomen relatively thick ().


The species is known from Baltic amber only. The female has been found in the so-called "Blue Earth" near Palmnicken (Kaliningrad).


The species is a member of the amber wood biocenosis. The amber woods are moist woods in a relatively warm climate, consisting of pines, oaks and other woods. Since they also contain heliophilous species, like some adelids, there must have been also open places and clearings.


Venation. Forewing: Sc simple, reaching costa distinctly before middle; R1 reaching costa slightly beyond middle; radius with 4 branches only; R2+R3 coalescing over their whole length; R4+R5 with long common stem; R5 preapical; M1+M2 coalescing over their whole length, originating from middle of cell; M3+Cu1 coalescing over their whole length; A1, A2 and A3 free (not visible in ); hindwing with much reduced venation; RR reaching costa at about 2/3 of wing length; following Kusnezov (1941), M has but one preapical branch; Cu2 far from Cu1, originating from near base; A1 fully developed, A2 reduced.

genitalia following Kusnezov (1941). Valves spoon-like, concave, lower margin uneven.

genitalia. With telescopic ovipositor; further details not visible.


Prolyonetia cockerelli has been placed by Kusnezov (1941) in the family Lyonetiidae in the sense of Meyrick, which contained at that time the genera Lyonetia, Opostega, Leucoptera, Bedellia, Tischeria, Bucculatrix, Oinophila and Dryadaula. Today, these genera belong to different superfamilies and families, the family Tischeriidae not even belonging to the Ditrysia. The investigation of the female allows a new assignment to the familiy Tineidae, maybe to the probably not monophyletic subfamily Meessinae, although we do not know any apomorphies for this subfamily and although there are no apomorphies of Tineidae traceable in the preparation with certainty. However, the assignment to Tineidae is supported besides the long, distant, hair-like scales on the head especially by the short, not functional proboscis, the erect bristles on the medial segment of the labial palpi and by the telescopic ovipositor. The assignment to Meessinae is based on the reduced venation in fore- and hindwings, especially the 4-branched radius in the forewing.

Worth knowing:


Kusnezov, N. J. 1941. A Revision of the Amber Lepidoptera. [In Russian, with English descriptions.] 136 pp., 59 Abb., Moskau, Leningrad.

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2015.11.07
Kurz Michael: 2016.02.21
Kurz Michael: 2016.02.23
Kurz Michael: 2016.03.10
Document reviewed by:
not reviewed: 2016.03.30
Document released by:
Kurz Michael: 2016.03.31