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

Gazoryctra ganna (Hübner, [1808])

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Bombyx ganna Hübner, [1808]: pl. 50, fig. 215.
Type locality: None given [Austria]
Type: not designated

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Hepialus arcticus Boheman, 1848. Type locality: Finland. Junior subjective synonym.
Hepialus ganna f. confluens Hellweger, 1914. Type locality: Germany. Infrasubspecific name.
Hepialus ganna f. reducta. Type locality: Austria. Infrasubspecific name.


: Salzburg, Hohe Tauern, Fusch, Hirzbach valley, Gleiwitzerhütte, 2174 m, 1958.08.11, leg. Karl Mazzuko, coll. Haus der Natur, Salzburg : Russia, Altai Mts., Ulagan distr., 1 km SW Chibit vill., 1200 m, 2017.08.16, leg. Knyazev S. A., coll. Michael Kurz    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view

Description of adults: Examined: 1 . Forewing length: 15 mm. Frons, Vertex and the very short palpi densely covered with long, brown, hair-like scales; eyes black, about 0.85 mm in diameter; distance of eyes slightly more than the diameter (frontal view); scapus covered with beige, hair-like scales; antennae about 1/4 of forewing length, light brown, filiform, with fine ciliae; thorax densely covered with long, hair-like scales, dark brown anteriorly, increasingly lighter posteriorly and laterally; forewing upperside fawn brown with white, delicately dark brown bordered markings, consisting of spots of variable dimensions: At the inner margin, close to the basis 2 spots, 3 additional ones along the costa; a hook-like spot at 1/3 in the middle of the wing and a partly interrupted, irregular row of spots inwardly oblique from the apex to the inner margin at about 2/3; at the outer margin towards the tornus 3 additional small spots; fringe fawn brown at the apex, beige at the outer margin, shining; hindwings with narrow, lanceolate scales, not completely covering the wing membrane in the basal third; colouration fawn brown, basally lightened beige, anterior margin somewhat darker; fringe fawn brown at the apex, at the outer margin shining beige; underside of wings similar to the upperside, but the white wing markings only weakly shining through from the upperside; legs densely covered with long, hair-like, dark fawn brown scales; foretibia with an epiphysis, mid- and hindtibia without spurs (Viette, 1948); abdomen dark brown, densely covered with short, hair-like scales of mixed dark brown and beige colouration.

The is slightly larger and lighter than the , of more yellowish colouration.


Karsholt & Nieukerken (2004) record the species from France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany (doubtfully), Sweden, Finnland and the north and north-west of European Russia. Furthermore, it has been recored to the Russian far East. In the Alps, G. ganna is distributed above the timber line up to about 2500 m a.s.l. (Forster & Wohlfahrt, 1960).


The flight period lasts from July to August. The imagines are on the wing immediately after the morning dawn.

Stages in development:

The early stages are unknown.


Picture from: © Viette 1948, modified
Detailed view

genitalia (Viette, 1948). Tegumen medially emarginate, laterally with two pairs of appendages, a shorter pair dorsally and a longer one ventrally; these appendages are well sclerotized and of darker colour, nearly black at their dentated margin; juxta small; valves relatively big, their distal margin slightly bent, at the basis with a flattened, tongue-shaped appendix; vinculum weakly developed.


Within its distribution range, the species is well characterized by the distinctly bordered and characteristically arranged white spots. From Gazoryctra macilenta, it is distinguished neither externally nor in the genitalia. The latter is therefore treated as synonym.

Worth knowing:


Forster W. & Th. A. Wohlfahrt 1960. Die Schmetterlinge Mitteleuropas, 3, Bombyces & Sphinges, Franckh´sche Verlagshandlung, Stuttgart
Hübner, J. 1796–1836 ["1808"] a. Sammlung europäischer Schmetterlinge. Augsburg. Continued by C. Geyer. Bombyces III, pl. 1-83.
Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken 2004. Hepialidae. In - Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 1.1, http://www.faunaeur.org [online 29 April 2009].
Leraut, P. 1992. Les papillons dans leur milieu, Bordas
Viette, P. 1948. Lépidoptères homoneures; in: Faune de France 49, Paris

Publication data:

Kurz Michael: 2006.01.07
Kurz Michael: 2009.06.19
Kurz Michael: 2012.02.04
Kurz Michael: 2017.03.01
Kurz Michael: 2020.05.12
not reviewed