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

Adela albicinctella Mann, 1852

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Adela albicinctella Mann, 1852
Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:


: Salzburg, Radstädter Tauern, Obertauern, Gamsleitenspitze, 1900 m, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: Examined: 5 . Forewing length: 6.5 - 7.2 mm. Head black-brown; vestiture of hair-like scales on the head mixed beige and brown; frons with a similar tuft of long, hair-like scales; eyes of elongate, oval, enlarged, at its long axis about 0.7 mm in diameter, golden brown; eyes converging each other parietally (distance about 0.4 mm); ocelli missing; labial palpi extending ahead in a slight bow, about 1 mm long, with bushy, distant, hair-like scaling of dark brown colour and a length of up to 0.8 mm; proboscis nearly devoid of scales; antennae about 2 1/2 () of forewing length; scapus inflated, flagellum basally brown, silvery-white ringed, at the underside completely silvery-white with clamp-like sensory organs; distad from 2/3 of its length brown with intensive coppery to purple glance; thorax and tegulae dark bronzy golden; basis of forewing and basal part of inner margin broad bronzy golden, otherwise the wing intensively deep purple to violet; at 2/3 a very small, silvery-white fascia across the whole wing width, proximally indistinctly violet bordered; a small silvery-white costal spot at 3/4; fringe indistinctly arranged in two rows, bronzy golden, at the costal margin and at the tornus purple; hindwings with broad scales, completely covering the wing membrane, brown-grey, bronzy golden shining and with distinct purple tinge; fringe bronzy golden with a delicate purple line at its basis; underside brown with intensive coppery glance, without any markings; fringe bronzy golden; thorax bronzy golden beneath, mixed purple; legs similar, with long, brown, hair-like scales, especially at the hindtibiae; tarsi with some silvery-white scales at the basis of the segments; foretibia with epiphysis; midtibia with a pair of long spurs at the distal end; hindtibia with a pair of long spurs each at about 0.6 of the tibial length and at the distal end; abdomen dark brown with weak bronzy golden to purple shimmer.


A. albicinctella is distributed at high altitudes in the Alps and in the central European uplands. It has been recorded from France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and Austria, as well as Poland and Slovakia (Karsholt & Nieukerken 2010). The vertical distribution has been documented from 1900 - 2240 m (Kurz & Kurz 2010).


The species inhabits alpine meadows at the edge of elder bushland (Alnus alnobetula). The imagines fly in full sunshine in June and early July (Kurz & Kurz 2010).


Among European Adelidae, A. albicinctella is very well characterized by its wing markings, especially by the nearly always present, small, silvery-white costal spot at 3/4. The species is distinctly larger and darker violet in ground colour than the otherwise similar Adela paludicolella Zeller, 1850, which is also distributed allopatrically in the central and eastern Mediterranean region.

Worth knowing:


Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken 2010. Adelidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 2.2., http://www.faunaeur.org [online 23 August 2010].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2010. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 23 August 2010].
Mann, J. 1852.

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2010.09.17
not reviewed