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 (Eriocrania) semipurpurella (Stephens, 1835)

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Lampronia semipurpurella Stephens, 1835: 359.
Type locality: England, Kent, Darenth Wood
Type: Syntype 1 , in coll. NHM, London (Davis 1978).

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Micropteryx amentella Zeller, 1850: 63. Type locality: Not specifically stated. Junior subjective synonym.
Micropteryx inconspicuella Wood, 1890: 3. Type locality: Not stated (presumably in the vicinity of Tarrington, Ledbury, England following Davis 1978). Junior subjective synonym.

Habit:

 
: Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Wörlemoos near Unzing, 1990.03.21, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz : Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur : Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 

Description of adults: Examined: 8 , 2 . Forewing length: 5.9 - 6.1 mm, 5.2 - 5.5 mm. Head black-brown; vestiture of hair-like scales on the head sparse, brown, mixed light grey; eyes 0.3 mm in diameter, distance of eyes about 1.5 times the diameter (frontal view); maxillary palpi long, folded, smoothly, but sparsely scaled, beige; antennae nearly 3/4 (), respectively, about 2/3 () of forewing length, dark brown with coppery reflections, mixed whitish at the underside; thorax dorsally at the anterior margin with adpressed scales, like the tegulae golden, spotted purple and blue; thorax otherwise sparsely scaled with hair-like scales, light and dark brown mixed, at the underside also golden shining; forewings moderately broad, purple-violet with more or less numerous, interspersed blue scales, partly fused to small spots and numerous small, irregular golden spots, arranged in an irregular reticulate pattern; basad of the tornus a roundish to elongate, yellowish spot at the inner margin, reaching across 1/4 of the wing width, sometimes nearly missing, sometimes reaching nearly across half of the wing width; fringe bronzy golden shining; hindwings with very narrow, nearly hair-like scales, leaving most of the wing membrane uncovered, being more numerous and somewhat broader only towards the apex of the wing; hindwings with nacre-like, coppery reflections, apically purplish; wing margin near the apex purple-violet with interspersed blue scales; fringe coppery, partly light golden shining; legs brown, bronzy golden shining; foretibia without epiphysis; midtibia with a single spur at the distal end; hindtibia with a pair of spurs each at about 0.7 - 0.8 of the tibial length and at the distal end.

Distribution:

E. semipurpurella is distributed from northern and central Europe throughout temperate Asia to Japan (anonymous 2012, Dubatolov 2012, Karsholt & Nieukerken 2013) and is recorded also from North America (from eastern Ontario east to Nova Scotia and south to southern New York following Davis 1978). Eriocrania semipurpurpella pacifica Davis, 1978 from western North America probably represents a separate species, due to its different hostplant (Wagner 1985) and minor morphological differences. In Europe, records are missing from Iceland, Portugal, the Mediterranean islands, most parts of the Balkans and parts of eastern Europe only (Moldova and Ukraine, see Karsholt & Nieukerken 2013, Dubatolov 2012). Verically, records are available from near sea-level up to 1050 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2015).

Biology:

E. semipurpurella has been found on high moor around Betula pubescens, at the margin of a pine-birch-spruce mixed forest. Nearby, there were open areas covered with Sphagnum sp., as well as with numerous small bushes of Betula pubescens (Kurz & Kurz 2015). Following Heath (1983), the animals are on the wing in full sunshine, sometimes in small swarms. During dull weather, they rest on the twigs. Sometimes, the animals may come to light too. The flight period lasts from late March to April in central Europe (Kurz & Kurz 2015), in North America a period from April till late May is recorded (Davis 1978).

Stages in development:

   
Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Unzing, Wörlemoos, 1989.05.19, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Unzing, Wörlemoos, 1989.05.19, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   

Morphology of preimaginal stages (Heath 1983).

Egg. The eggs are laid on buds of birch.

Larva. The larva is whitish with a light ochreous brown head. It lives from the end of March till May in a blotch-like mine in the leaves of birch.

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

Anatomy:

-genitalia, prep.-no. 473, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Unzing, Wörlemoos, 1990.03.21, leg et. coll. Michael Kurz the same preparation, tip of aedeagus and parameres -genitalia, prep.-no. 523, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Unzing, Wörlemoos, 1991.04.11, leg. et coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, prep.-no. 480, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur, Salzburg
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 
-genitalia, prep.-no. 477, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur, Salzburg -genitalia, internal abdominal sclerite: Canada, Quebec, Lac Mondor abdomen, prep.-no. 477, M. Kurz, sensorium: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur, Salzburg  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: © Davis 1978
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 

Pregenital abdomen. Sternite V in both sexes laterally with a round, weakly sclerotized sensory organ on both sides, which has the form of a short tube; sternite IV in females laterally with an oval, weakly sclerotized area, which has about 1.5-2 times the diameter of the structure on sternite V.

genitalia. Genitalia very stout; twin lobes of uncus medium sized, moderately broad, triangulate, at their posterior tip with a strongly sclerotized, distinctly offset area with moderately long, inwardly directed, spinoid setae; valves reduced, distinctly asymmetric, lobe-like drooping from the posterior margin of the vinculum; left valve somewhat dislocated dorsally, very small, extending only across half of the length of the posterior margin of the vinculum; at its psterior margin an area of short, spinoid setae; right valve extending across the full length of the posterior margin of the vinculum, at its posterior margin also with an area of short, spinoid setae; appendices of the vinculum of about the same length as the dorsal margin of the vinculum, slender; aedeagus long and slender, of about the same length as vinculum and its appendices together; paramere as long as the aedeagus, at the posterior end slightly inflated und distinctly dentated.

genitalia. Internal abdominal sclerite (tergite IX ?) with two hook-like branches, the dorsal one fork-like divided; sternite IX reduced to two very narrow chitinous ridges; apophyses very long, apohyses anteriores reaching back to abdominal segment VI, apohyses posteriores reaching back to abdominal segment V; tergite X (?) forming a rod-like sclerotization in longitudinal direction; tip of ovipositor without distinct characters; inner genital organs not sclerotized.

Diagnosis:

E. semipurpurella : Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur E. sangii : Eastern Tyrol, Lengberg, 850 m, 2004.04.03, leg. Helmut Deutsch, coll. Michael Kurz Eriocrania species : Eastern Tyrol, Drau valley, near Lienz, Lengberg, 800-850 m, 2007.04.15, leg. Helmut Deutsch, coll. Michael Kurz E. semipurpurella -genitalia, prep.-no. 473, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Flachgau, Eugendorf, Unzing, Wörlemoos, 1990.03.21, leg et. coll. Michael Kurz
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Zeller Christof
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
E. sangii -genitalia, prep.-no. 470, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.03.23, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Michael Kurz Tip of paramere: above: E. semipupurella, below: E. sangii E. semipurpurella -genitalia, prep.-no. 477, M. Kurz: Salzburg, Untersberg area, Großgmain, Wartberg, 1974.04.01, leg. Fritz Mairhuber, coll. Haus der Natur, Salzburg E. sangii -genitalia, prep.-no. 930, M. Kurz: Eastern Tyrol, Dölsach, Görtschacher Berg, 850-900 m, 2007.04.14, leg. Helmut Deutsch, 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
   
Eriocrania sp. -genitalia, prep.-no. 929, M. Kurz: Eastern Tyrol, Drau valley, near Lienz, Lengberg, 800-850 m, 2007.04.15, leg. Helmut Deutsch, coll. Michael Kurz E. pacifica -genitalia, internal abdominal sclerite    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: © Davis 1978
Detailed view
   

The nearly hair-like scales on the hindwing, which leave most of the wing membrane uncovered, readily distinguish E. semipurpurella from most other purple-violet species of the genus. Eriocrania sangii (Wood, 1891), which is nearly indistinguishable externally, normally has a more prominent spot at the inner margin basad of the tornus. In the male genitalia, the paramere in E. semipurpurella is distinctly dentated, whereas in E. sangii this dentation is missing. The internal abdominal sclerite of the females of E. semipurpurella has two branches only, whereas in E. sangii it has three. Eriocrania semipurpurella pacifica Davis, 1978 is probably a distinct species. It differs from typical E. semipurpurella by the missing dentation of the paramere in the male genitalia, but also in the larval foodplant, which is of the order Rosales (Holodiscus discolor Maxim, see Wagner 1985). Morphological differences indicate also another, hitherto undescribed species from Europe, which shows a different internal abdominal sclerite in the females.

Worth knowing:

Sources:

anonymous 2012. An Identification Guide of Japanese Moths Compiled by Everyone. URL: http://www.jpmoth.org [online 04 November 2012].
Davis, D. R. 1978. A Revision of the North American Moths of the Superfamily Eriocranioidea with the Proposal of a New Family Acanthopteroctetidae (Lepidoptera). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 251: I-IV, 1-131, 344 fig.
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. & E. J. van Nieukerken 2013. Eriocraniidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 2.6.2, http://fauna.naturkundemuseum-berlin.de/ [online 05 October 2015].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2015. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 05 October 2015].
Stephens, J. F. 1835. Illustrations of British Entomology; or, a Synopsis of Indigenous Insects: Containing their Generic and Specific Distinctions; with an Account of their Metamorphoses, Times of Appearance, Localities, Food, and Economy, as Far as Practicable. Haustellata 4: 1-434 + pl. 33-41.
Wagner, D. 1985. First California record and confirmation of a rosaceous host for Eriocrania (Eriocraniidae). Journal of the Lepidopterist´s Society 39 (1): 52
Zagulajev, A.K. 1978. Eriocraniidae; in G.S. Medvedev (ed.): Keys to the insects of the European part of the USSR, Vol.IV: Lepidoptera, part 1 (english translation), Oxonian Press Pvt.Ltd., New Dehli, 1987.

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2009.06.10
Kurz Michael: 2010.12.02
Kurz Michael: 2012.10.31
Kurz Michael: 2012.11.03
Kurz Michael: 2012.11.04
Kurz Michael: 2012.11.26
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.05
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.06
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.07
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.19
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.25
Kurz Michael: 2015.10.27
Kurz Michael: 2015.11.30
Kurz Michael: 2015.12.15
Document reviewed by:
not reviewed: 2015.12.15
Document released by:
Kurz Michael: 2015.12.15

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