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 malella (Stainton, 1854)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Nepticula malella Stainton, 1854: 304.
Type locality: England
Type: Syntypes: England: larva in mines on wild apple (Malus sylvestris), autumn and July, imago May and August, Stainton, in coll. NHM, London?

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Nepticula angustella Heinemann & Wocke, [1876]: 756. Type locality: Germany, Braunschweig. Junior subjective synonym.
Nepticula nigrobrunnella Groschke, 1939: 716. Type locality: Poland (formerly Germany), Duszniki-Zdrbj (Bad Reinerz), Klodzko area (Grafschaft Glatz). Junior subjective synonym.
Nepticula malella var. prunicola Skala, 1939. 126. Nomen nudum.

Distribution:

The species is distributed throughout Europe from the British Isles to the Ural mountains and from Fennoscandia to the Mediterranean bassin, although it has not been recorded yet from some areas like Norway, Sardinia, Sicily, Turkey and some parts of European Russia. It is also known from the Caucasus (Nieukerken 2019). S. malella is a lowland-species with confirmed occurences from near sea-level to about 800 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2019).

Biology:

The species occurs in two generations per year, with imagines from end of March (reared individuals) till May and again in July and August and larvae in June and July and from the end of August till September. Preferred biotopes are bushland, wood edges and apple plantations (Kurz & Kurz 2019).

Stages in development:

 
Larva: Lower Austria, Korneuburg, Bisamberg, 2007.09.22 Mine: Lower Austria, Korneuburg, Bisamberg, 2007.09.22 Mines on Malus domestica: Salzburg, Flachgau, Thalgau, 1988.10.01, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 

Egg. The eggs are laid on the leaves of apple (Malus sp.) and rarly also cherry (Prunus cerasus, described as Nepticula nigrobrunnella Groschke, 1939). Records for Fragaria or Potentilla (as Nepticula angustella Heinemann & Wocke, [1876]) are very doubtful however.

Larva. The larva is yellow. The mine is a moderately long, often contorted and considerably widening corridor with a central black-brown frass-line, leaving distinct clear margins. The cocoon is bright yellow (Stainton 1854).

Diagnosis:

The empty mine is hardly distinguishable from that of Stigmella desperatella (Frey, 1856). Tenanted mines however are easily separable by the colour of the larva, which is yellow in S. malella and green in S. desperatella.

Worth knowing:

Sources:

Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 20002019. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. URL: https://www.nkis.info [online 2019.08.16].
Nieukerken, E. J. van 2019. Nepticulidae and Opostegidae of the world. URL: http://nepticuloidea.info/ [online 2019.08.16].
Stainton, H. T. 1854. Insecta Britannica. Lepidoptera: Tineina. Lovell Reeve, London, 313 pp.

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2014.02.16
Kurz Michael: 2015.11.18
Kurz Michael: 2019.08.16
not reviewed

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