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

Cauchas Zeller, 1839

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Cauchas Zeller, 1839: 186.
Type: Tinea fibulella [Denis & Schiffermüller], 1775

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
? Adelites Rebel, 1934: 373. Type species: Adelites electreella Rebel, 1934b.

Taxonomic note: Adelites is based on a single female, which does not allow an assignment to one of the extant genera of Adelinae, since only males show the diagnostic structures on their antennae. A formal synonymization of Adelites with Cauchas is therefore presently not possible, although the short antennae of the imagines are indicative for this.


Description of adults: Very small to medium sized moths; head with erect, hair-like scales, sometimes face, at least above mouth, smoothly scaled, metallic shining; maxillary palpi well developed, 3-segmented; labial palpi of similar size, 3-segmented; haustellum often short; eyes mostly of normal size, far from each other, sometimes moderately enlarged in ; antennae of 3/4 - 1 1/2 of forewing length, in mostly somewhat shorter; scapus swollen; flagellum either filiform, sometimes thickened or with erect scales on each flagellomere in , in mostly filiform without prominent aggregation of scales in basal part; specialized, clamp-like or bristle-like structures absent in basal part in both genders; body often with metallic shining coloration; forewings more or less elongate, sometimes pointed at apex with metallic shining ground colour; markings, if present, mostly represented by a more or less complete, light medial cross-fascia, eventually a small costal spot at about 3/4, rarely other markings; hindwings with broad scales, completely covering the wing membrane, mostly brown with violet shimmer and light anterior margin; foretibia with or without epiphysis, midtibia with well developed pair of spurs at distal end; hindtibia with a apir of spurs medially and at distal end; abdomen more or less conical, often with apical tuft of hair-like scales, but without specially sclerotized, pointed apex in females.

Plate of imagines (Europe)



Imagines of Cauchas are day-active and fly close to the ground vegetation, mostly near or above their larval foodplants. These plants are often also utilized for nectaring. Imagines are rarely gregarious and only seldom they rise significantly the vegetation. Sometimes, males aggregate in small numbers and swarm above the foodplants. Due to the mostly short haustellum only open accessible blossoms with short corolla tubes can be utilized for nectaring. The animals lower their head as far as possible down to the corolla tube, whilst slightly raising their abdomen. The sexes mostly meet on the larval foodplants, where copulation takes place. As far as known, eggs are laid singly in unripe seed capsules, using the ovipositor. The night or bad waether conditions are passed on the underside of leaves or close to the ground under the protection of the larval foodplant.
Preferred biotopes are sunny to moderately shady places, often on sunny wood edges or on clearings. Shady woodland or tall herb vegetation is mostly avoided, as are extremely rocky and stony places. Normally, one generation per year developes, with imagines in spring or early summer in higher altitudes. The winter is passed in the larval stage.


Veneation. In forewing, normally all five r-veins free with R5 (Rs4) preapical; anal vein with basal loop.

genitalia. Correspondent to the Incuvarioid ground plan, with prominent saccus; uncus small, socii developed; valvae simple, without comb-like row of pegs; juxta arrow-like; aedeagus long, slender, without cornuti.

genitalia. Tip of ovipositor sclerotized (piercing oviscapt) like in other Incurvarioidea; inner genital organs not sclerotized, rarely diagnostic; bursa copulatrix without signa.

Worth knowing:

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2013.01.27
Kurz Michael: 2020.01.06
not reviewed