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

Eriocrania (Heringocrania) unimaculella (Zetterstedt, 1839)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Adela unimaculella Zetterstedt, 1839: 1008
Type locality: southern Lappland
Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:


: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.03.23, leg. Mairhuber, coll. Michael Kurz : Salzburg, Gois, Goiser Moos, 436m, 2010.04.19, leg. et coll. Christof Zeller : Salzburg, Flachgau, Köstendorf, Kleinköstendorf, 2018.04.18. leg. Zeller & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: © Zeller Christof
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: Examined: 1 , additional data following Heath 1983. Forewing length: Not measured. Vestiture of hair-like scales on the head dense, brownish; antennae dark brown, 1/2 of forewing length; forewings elongate, mostly bronzy to purple with scattered golden scales, which may be arranged into irregular fasciae especially in the outer third of the wing; basally of the tornus a silvery-white, elongate spot at the inner margin, slightly bent basalwards, of semilunatic shape and reaching across half of the wing width; fringe dull golden; hindwings beige, apically tinged purple; fringe dull golden; abdomen brownish.


According to Karsholt (2004), the species occurs from the British Isles throughout France and central Europe to Scandinavia. It has been reported from Romania and the southern part of European Russia too. Records are also known from the west Siberian plain (Dubatolov 2012), whereas from Japan the species seems to be absent (anonymous 2012).


The animals are on the wing in March and April in full sunshine around birch trees. During dull weather, they rest on the twigs of birch (Heath 1983).

Stages in development:

Mine on Betula pubescens: Salzburg, Pinzgau, Salzach valley, Kaprun, Filzmoos, 2013.06.08, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz      
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Morphology of preimaginal stages (Heath 1983).

Egg. The egg is laid into a leaf bud of birch (Betula sp.).

Larva. The larva is whitish with a brown head and a greenish line on the back. The papilli on the first thoracic segment appear as tiny black dots. The thoracic segments bear small protrusions. The larva feeds from the End of April till the end of May in a blotch-like mine in a leaf of birch.

Pupa. The pupa rests in a tough silken cocoon in the ground and hibernates.


genitalia, prep.-no. 471, M.Kurz: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.03.23, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Michael Kurz genitalia, schematic drawing    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: © Zagulayev 1978
Detailed view


Eriocrania unimaculella, genitalia, schematic drawing Eriocrania chrysolepidella, genitalia, schematic drawing    
Picture from: © Zagulayev 1978
Detailed view
Picture from: © Zagulayev 1978
Detailed view

The species is well characterized by its silvery-white spot near the tonus, which is dull golden or missing in other European species of the genus.

Worth knowing:


anonymous 2012. An Identification Guide of Japanese Moths Compiled by Everyone. URL: http://www.jpmoth.org [online 04 November 2012].
Dubatolov, V. V. 2012. Collection of Siberian Zoological Museum: Eriocraniidae. http://szmn.sbras.ru/Lepidop/Eriocran.htm [online 04 November 2012].
Heath, J. 1983. The moths and butterflies of Great Britain and Ireland, Vol.I: Micropterigidae – Heliozelidae. – Harley Books, Martins, Great Horkesley, Colchester, Essex.
Karsholt, O. 2004. Families Acanthopteroctetidae, Axiidae, Castniidae, Cossidae, Drepanidae, Eriocottidae, Eriocraniidae, Gelechiidae, Heterogynidae, Limacodidae, Lypusidae, Micropterigidae, Roeslerstammiidae, Somabrachyidae, Uraniidae. In: Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 1.1, http://www.faunaeur.org [online 22 January 2009].
Zagulajev, A.K. 1978. Eriocraniidae; in G.S. Medvedev (ed.): Keys to the insects of the europaean part of the USSR, Vol.IV: Lepidoptera, part 1 (english translation), Oxonian Press Pvt.Ltd., New Dehli, 1987.Zetterstedt, J. W. 1839. Insecta Lapponica. Sectio Quarta: [869/870]-1039/1140. Lipsiae.

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2009.05.18
Kurz Michael: 2012.11.04
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.20
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.19
Kurz Michael: 2018.12.12
not reviewed