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

Gastropacha quercifolia (Linné, 1758)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Phalaena quercifolia Linné, 1758: 497.
Type locality: Unknown [Europe]
Type: Syntype? : "quercifolia; 812"; in coll. The Linnean Collections at The Linnean Society of London (picture)

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Gastropacha quercifolia var. sibirica Krulikovsky, 1909: 111. Type locality: Saisan, SW-Siberia [Saissan, Kazakhstan]. Junior subjective synonym of Phalaena quercifolia quercifolia Linné, 1758.
Lasiocampa quercifolia var. dalmatina Gerhard, 1882: 128. Type locality: Dalmatia. Junior subjective synonym of Phalaena quercifolia quercifolia Linné, 1758.
Lasiocampa? quercifolia f. alnifolia Ochsenheimer, 1810. Infrasubspecific name.
Gastropacha? quercifolia f. meridionalis Hormuzaki, 1897. Infrasubspecific name.
Gastropacha quercifolia var. cerridifolia C. & R. Felder, 1862: 35. Type locality: China, Ning-Po. Subspecies.
Gastropacha coreana Matsumura, 1927: 22, pl. 3, f. 3. Type locality: Corea, Shakoji. Junior subjective synonym of Gastropacha quercifolia var. cerridifolia C. & R. Felder, 1862.
Gastropacha quercifolia coreopacha Bryk, 1948. Type locality: Unknown. Junior subjective synonym of Gastropacha quercifolia var. cerridifolia C. & R. Felder, 1862


The species is distributed nearly throughout Europe, missing only in Iceland, Ireland and Portugal (Karsholt & Nieukerken 2019). Furthermore, it occurs also throughout south Siberia to China and Corea, where it is represented by ssp. cerridifolia C. & R. Felder, 1862. The vertical distribution in Europe is documented from sea-level to 1100 m, exceptionally to 1300 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2019).


G. quercifolia inhabits warm and dry deciduous woods like downy oak woods, adjacent dry grassland, park-like landscapes, but also high moors. The imagines fly in one generation per year from June to early September. The egg period is short, larvae overwinter in an early state. Imagines are night-active and fly in the first half of the night (Kurz & Kurz 2019).

Stages in development:

Larva. The larvae feed on various deciduous woods. Following various authors (e.g. lepiforum 2019), the following food plants are given: Malus domestica, Sorbus aucuparia, furthermore Salix, Crataegus, Rhamnus, Berberis, Corylus oder Erica. Questionable are Betula and Quercus.


In the very similar Gastropacha populifolia ([Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775), the dark cross-lines on the forewing upperside are dissolved in separate spots. It is also lighter in ground colour.

Worth knowing:


Karsholt, O. & Nieukerken, E.J. van. 2019. Lepidoptera, Moths. Fauna Europaea version 2017.06, https://fauna-eu.org [online 2019.09.10].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2019. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 2019.09.10].
Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema Naturae, Ed. X. (Systema naturae per regna tria naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata.) Holmiae. Systema Nat. ed. 10 i-ii + 1-824.
lepiforum 2019. Bestimmungshilfe für die in Europa nachgewiesenen Schmetterlingsarten. http://lepiforum.de/lepiwiki.pl [online 2019.09.10].
Savela, M. 2019. Lepidoptera and some other life forms. Gastropacha Ochsenheimer, 1816. http://ftp.funet.fi/pub/sci/bio/life/insecta/lepidoptera/ditrysia/bombycoidea/lasiocampidae/lasiocampinae/gastropacha/ [online 2019.09.10].

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2019.09.10
not reviewed