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 anomalella (Goeze, 1783)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Phalaena Tinea anomalella Goeze, 1783: 168-169.
Type locality: Germany
Type: Syntypes: Germany

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Tinea penicilla Thunberg, 1794
Stigmella rosella Schrank, 1802
Nepticula aeneella Heinemann, 1862
Nepticula fletcheri Tutt, 1899
Nepticula laticuniculella Sauber, 1904
Stigmella rubicurrens Walsingham, 1908
Nepticula rosarum Sorhagen, 1922
Nepticula zermattensis Weber, 1937
Nepticula helbigi Hartig, 1941
Stigmella caulescentella Klimesch, 1946.


: schematic      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: : "Wingspan: 5-6 mm. Head: frontal tuft varying from ochreous or yellowish brown to dark fuscous (in Scandinavia usually fuscous); collar yellowish white; scape white; antenna approximately half length of forewing. Forewing: shining greenish bronzy, tinged with copper on base of costa; distal quarter well-defined purplish brown to purplish fuscous; terminal cilia concolorous but paler at tips. Hindwing: pale grey brown, basal third with patch of distinctly darker scales. Abdomen: dark fuscous with faint purple tinge." (Nieukerken 2014)

: "Wingspan: 5.5-6.5 mm. Antenna slightly shorter than half length of forewing. Hindwing without dark scales at base, otherwise similar to male." (Nieukerken 2014).


The species is distributed throughout Europe except Iceland, Spain, Sardinia, Sicily, Greece and parts of European Russia (Karsholt & Nieukerken 2011). Furthermore, it has also been found in the Canary Islands and in Kazakhstan (Nieukerken 2014). Vertically, records have been documented so far from about sea-level to 1700 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2014).


S. anomalella is preferably found along edges of bush- and woodland, but also on single rose-bushes on poor meadows or clear-cuttings. Furthermore it is regularly present in parks and gardens (Kurz & Kurz 2014). The species is bivoltine (Nieukerken 2014), with most larvae in June and September, October (Kurz & Kurz 2014), but occasionally also later in the autumn (Nieukerken 2014).

Stages in development:

Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Sophiensiedlung, 2002.08.26 Mine on Rosa rugosa: Salzburg, Tennengau, Salzach valley, Hallein, Rif, 2006.06.18 Mine on Rosa gallica: Lower Austria, Korneuburg, Bisamberg, 2007.09.22 Mine on Rosa sp. (cultivar): Salzburg, Flachgau, Thalgau, 1987.10.31, leg. et 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
Mine on Rosa canina agg.: Salzburg, Flachgau, Thalgau, 1988.08.06, leg. Marion & Michael Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of early stages following Nieukerken (2014):

Egg. The egg is normally deposited on the underside, close to a rib.

Larva. The larva is yellow, with a single row of darker dorsal spots. It feeds on both wild and cultivated roses (e.g. Rosa canina agg., Rosa gallica, Rosa rugosa following Kurz & Kurz 2014), Potentilla caulescens (in the southern Alps), Sanguisorba officinalis and Sanguisorba minor. The latter plants are utilized only rarely in central Europe, where Rosa ssp. are the main foodplants. The larvae feed normally singly in a leaflet, although mostly several mines are found on a single foodplant. The mine is a long, gradually wideneing gallery, which often follows the leaf margin; the first fourth of the mine is normally filled with frass, later a broad central line of black frass leaves clear margins. The cocoon is red to red brown and is often found at the base of the leaf or at the leaf-stalk.


-genitalia -genitalia    
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 with distinct concavity in anterior extension; lateral corners narrow. Uncus with two short, rounded protuberances with heavily sclerotized margins. Gnathos with short transverse bar and moderately long horns. Valva with pointed, arcuate distal process and small rounded inner lobe, constricted at base. Lateral arms and transverse bar of transtilla forming a U-shaped band without sublateral processes. Aedeagus slightly shorter than genital capsule, vesica with 6-8 small and a few smaller spines in two groups." (Nieukerken 2014). Genitalia. "Bursa copulatrix approximately threequarters length of abdomen. Accessory sac relatively large. Reticulate field large, but indistinct. Ductus spermathecae half length of bursa copulatrix, anterior part widened and with one or two convolutions. Corpus bursae large, oval and almost completely covered with long and thin pectinations. Apophyses anteriores and posteriores of equal length, straight and slender." (Nieukerken 2014).


"S. anomalella can frequently be separated from all other unicolorous species by pale greenish bronzy forewing with distinctly darker purplish-brown to purplish-fuscous distal part and, in the male, a patch of darker scales at base of hindwing. The male genitalia of anomalella and S. centifoliella are very similar (centifoliella has fascia on forewing!), but the larger cornuti in anomalella are pointed (blunt in centifoliella) and the smaller cornuti sparse (numerous in centifoliella). The female genitalia of the two species are exceedingly similar, but anomalella can normally be recognized by its larger accessory sac and longer ductus spermathecae." (Nieukerken 2014). Mines of both species can usually be separated by the frass, filling the first quarter completely in anomalella, but leaving narrow clear margins in centifoliella.

Worth knowing:


Goeze, J. A. E. 1783. Entomologische Beyträge zu des Ritter Linné zwölften Ausgabe des Natursystems. Vol. 3, bd. 4. Weidmanns Erben und Reich, Leipzig. 178 pp.
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 2014.02.17].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2014. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 2014.02.21].
Nieukerken, E. J. van 2014: Nepticulidae and Opostegidae of the world. - URL: http://nepticuloidea.info/ [online 2014.02.17].

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2005.08.28
Kurz Michael: 2010.09.11
Kurz Michael: 2014.02.16
Kurz Michael: 2014.02.21
Kurz Michael: 2015.12.02
Kurz Michael: 2016.07.06
Kurz Michael: 2016.08.03
Kurz Michael: 2016.08.06
not reviewed