British Insects: the Families of Lepidoptera
Adults diurnal; relatively very long-bodied; medium built (wingspan more than 8 and less than 15 times the thoracic width) to heavily built (wingspan less than 8 times the thoracic width). The abdomen plain. Adults wings in repose packed with the forewings directed backwards to cover hindwings and abdomen.
Antennae of medium length to long; extending to about 0.58–0.8 times the length of the forewing; clubbed to not clubbed. The club gradual. Antennae of males bipectinate (in Procris), or simple. Ocelli present (usually), or absent. Chaetosemata absent. Maxillary palps much reduced; 1 segmented, or 2 segmented. Labial palps ascending (short). Proboscis fully developed; not scaly.
Wingspan 22–39 mm; 6–9.5(–11) times the thoracic width. Forewings narrow to broad; 2–2.5 times as long as wide. The outer and hind margins angled at 105–115 degrees. The outer margin convexly curved; forewings apically blunt; forewings predominantly shining-metallic, or neither shining-metallic nor with shining metallic markings; forewings without a jugum. Hindwings ovate to broadly rounded; quite markedly narrower than the forewings to similar in breadth to the forewings; with a rounded apex; the upper surfaces conspicuously patterned above (sometimes dark-bordered, in Zygaena), or plain; with neither discal spot nor transverse lines; with a frenulum.
Neuration of forewings and hindwings dissimilar. Forewings 13 veined; with 2 anal veins. The anal veins of the forewings comprising 1b and 1c. Forewings exhibiting a tubular vein 1c. Vein 1b of the forewings furcate proximally. The transverse vein complete to incomplete. Discal cell of the forewings containing a tubular media (M) vein (likewise that of the hind-wings), or without a tubular media (M) vein (then the M vein vestigial). Hindwings 9 veined, or 10 veined; with 3 anal veins. The anal veins of the hindwings comprising 1a, 1b and 1c. Hindwings exhibiting vein 1a; exhibiting a tubular vein 1c. The transverse vein complete to incomplete. 6 veins arising from the hindwing cell. The cell-derived hindwing veins all arising independently of one another. Vein 8 of the hindwings joined to the cell only by a bar (near its middle); not approximating to vein 7.
Fore-legs with a tibial epiphysis, or without a tibial epiphysis. Tibiae of middle legs 2-spurred. Posterior tibiae 2-spurred, or 4-spurred.
Tympanal organs absent.
Eggs, larvae and pupae. Eggs not flattened (elongate-oval); finely ribbed and/or reticulate. Larval prolegs 10. Larvae exposed feeders. On various (mainly herbaceous) Dicots.
Pupae concealed; above the ground. Empty pupae protruded from place of concealment.
British representation. Genera 2; 10 species. Adscita geryon (Cistus Forester), Adscita statices (Green Forester), Jordanita globulariae (Scarce Forester), Zygaena exulans (Scotch or Mountain Burnet, not illustrated), Zygaena filipendulae (Six-spot Burnet), Zygaena lonicerae (Narrow-bordered Five-spot Burnet), Zygaena loti (Slender Scotch Burnet, not illustrated), Zygaena purpuralis (Transparent Burnet), Zygaena trifolii (Five-spot Burnet), Zygaena viciae (New Forest Burnet).
Classification. Macromoths. Suborder Ditrysia. Superfamily Zygaenoidea.
Comments. Rare melanic mutations (seemingly selectively disadvantageous) are represented in Zygaena filipendulae.
Illustrations. • British Adscita, Jordanita, Zygaena (Burnets, Foresters): Newman. • Zygaena species (Burnets): Kirby. • Adscita statices (Green Forester: B. Ent. 396). • Adscita statices: B. Ent. 396, legend+text. • Adscita statices: B. Ent. 396, text cont.. • Adscita statices: neuration. • Adscita geryon (Cistus Forester - specimens): photos. • Zygaena trifolii f. palustrella (Five-spot Burnet): freshly emerged (Giles Watson, photo). • Zygaena trifolii f. palustrella, cf. preceding (photo). • Zygaena trifolii f. palustrella, copulating pairs (photo). • Zygaena trifolii f. palustrella (Five-spot Burnet, imbibing: photo, Giles Watson. • Zygaena filipendulae (Six-spot Burnet: B. Ent. 547). • Zygaena filipendulae: B. Ent. 547, legend+text. • Zygaena filipendulae: B. Ent. 547, text cont.. • Zygaena filipendulae (Six-spot Burnet: Giles Watson, photo). • Zygaena trifolii: neuration.
To view illustrations with legends giving names in current use, 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, as well as source references and other relevant material.
Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. British insects: the families of Lepidoptera. Version: 29th December 2011. http://delta-intkey.com’.