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      
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. 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.

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
not reviewed