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

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Donacaula Meyrick

Adults. Face without a conical hairy prominence. Proboscis atrophied. Labial palps relatively very long.

Wingspan 25–29 mm. The adults conspicuously sexually dimorphic. The fringe not glistening-metallic. Termen somewhat sinuate. Ground colour of the forewings ochreous (or ochreous yellowish), or brown. Forewings inconspicuously patterned, or conspicuously patterned with contrasting colours. The patterning simple; restricted to longitudinal streaking, or restricted to transverse markings. Forewings without a median line; transversely dark-lined towards the termen, or not transversely dark-lined towards the termen; the subterminal lines not white-edged; without a strong white median streak; without conspicuous white marks at or near the apex. Hindwings whitish, or ochreous whitish, or pale fuscous; plain.

Distribution and habitats. England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. Occurring in coastal locations and inland. In wet places (including ditches, canals, marshes and fens). British species: D. forficella, D. mucronellus. Adults abroad June and July.

Larvae. Larvae feeding on monocots; Poaceae (D. forficella on Phragmites and Glyceria maxima), or Poaceae and Cyperaceae (D. mucronellus on Phragmites and Carex).

Subfamily. Schoenobiinae.

General comments. The adults scarcely distinguishable morphologically from those of Schoenobius, except they tend to be smaller.

Illustrations. • Donacaula forficella and D. mucronellus, with Chilo Calamotropha, Haimbachia, Schoenobiinae and Pyraustinae: Leech, 1886. • Donacaula forficella (Lance-winged Veneer): B. Ent. 727. • Donacaula forficella: B. Ent. 727, legend+text. • Donacaula forficella: B. Ent. 727, text cont.. • Donacaula forficella and D. mucronellus, with Schoenobius: Barrett. • Donacaula forficella and Schoenobius gigantella, with mainland-European S. consortella and Scirpophaga praelatella: Hübner (1796). • D. forficella and D. mucronellus: forewing venation.

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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.’.