Insects of Britain and Ireland: the genera of grass moths (Pyralidae-Crambinae and Schoenobiinae)

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Calamotropha Zeller

Adults. Face without a conical hairy prominence. Proboscis atrophied.

Wingspan 23–29 mm (the females larger than the males). The adults conspicuously sexually dimorphic to not very sexually dimorphic (females larger and plainer). Forewings rather broad, the very slightly sinuous-convex termen not oblique, the apex somewhat pointed; whitish or light brownish, weakly suffused fuscous, posteriorly darkened along the veins; either with two blackish basal dots, two or three representing the antemedian line, a dark discal dot, and an oblique row of them representing the postmedian line, or (especially in females) some or all the dots lacking; the cilia barred brown and buff. The fringe not glistening-metallic. The fringe conspicuously chequered. Forewing apices rather pointed; termen no more than very slightly sinuate, or non-sinuate. Ground colour of the forewings pale brown, or grey, or whitish. Forewings plain to inconspicuously patterned. The patterning simple; consisting of dark dots. Forewings without a median line (perhaps represented by 2 or 3 dots); not transversely dark-lined towards the termen; without a strong white median streak; without conspicuous white marks at or near the apex. Forewing vein 7 arising from vein 8. Hindwings white; plain; shining white, marked only by a fine, broken dark terminal line; the cilia also white.

Distribution and habitats. In wet places (associated with the wetter parts of large fens and marshes and the margins of broads, but wandering elsewhere). British species: C. paludella. Adults abroad July and August.

Larvae. Larvae feeding on monocots; Typha (mining a leaf in late summer and autumn, then after hibernating in its base mining a dead leaf or stem prior to pupating in the larval mine in June). E. and central-southern England and Isle of Wight, East Anglia and Lincolnshire, Dorset to N. Somerset, Gloucestersire, S. Wales.

Subfamily. Crambinae.

Illustrations. • Calamotropha paludella, with Chilo, Schoenobiinae and Pyraustinae: Leech, 1886. • Calamotropha paludella, with Chilo: Barrett. • C. paludella, with Chilo, Haimbachia, Platytes and Talis: Hübner (1797–1824).

To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. Insects of Britain and Ireland: the genera of grass moths (Pyralidae-Crambinae and Schoenobiinae). Version: 8th June 2016.’.