British Insects: Pug moths (Lepidoptera-Geometridae)

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Eupithecia indigata (Hübner)

E. indigaria Boisduval.

Ochreous Pug.

Adults. Posterior tibiae of males 4-spurred. Wingspan 17–21 mm. Forewings distinctly elongate (very much so); the outer margin more or less straight; the costa more or less straight; apically blunt to somewhat pointed.

Forewings dingy; pale greyish-ochreous brown, with faint angulated striae darkened as dusky costal spots, a faint angulated postmedian fascia and a somewhat darkened terminal band, or all these markings obsolete; subterminal line absent or obscure. The forewing patterning more or less confined to the dark discal spot; without a predominant anterior-median triangle of dark spots. Forewings with a dark discal mark (this large and prominent). The discal mark elongate (transversely oval, at least sometimes approaching the costa); not whitish-edged; black and distinct. Forewings without a tornal spot. Forewing fringes somewhat chequered (pale).

Hindwings whitish to pale grey, somewhat paler than the forewings, with very faint striae; fairly conspicuously patterned to rather plain; almost without transverse striation, or transversely striated (at least sometimes with bent dark median and postmedian striae, the former traversing the discal spot); with a clear discal mark to without a clear discal mark; the fringes brown, not conspicuously chequered.

The abdomen conspicuously patterned; with a brown or ferrugineous sub-basal band; with a lateral blackish spot.

Genitalia. The male abdominal plate in the form of a single sclerotized patch with retuse apex, or in the form of a single sclerotized patch with entire apex. The bursa copulatrix ornamented over most of its surface; conspicuously spiny to only inconspicuously spiny (no large spines).

Early stages, ecology. Botanically specialised. Foodplants Gymnospermous; Pinaceae (normally), or Cupressaceae. The larvae found on Pinus and Larix, in captivity accepting juniper and cypress; feeding on cone primordia and scale leaves (not the needles) (and perhaps also on lateral vegetative buds).

Months of appearance, distribution. Adults abroad late April, May, and June; larvae found June, July, August, and September. South-east England, Central-southern England, South-west England, English Midlands, Northern England, Southern Scotland, Northern Scotland, Wales, and Ireland (locally common throughout, except Outer Hebrides, Shetlands and Orkneys).

Special key characters. The subterminal line if detectable at all, not whitish throughout. Hindwings whitish, or pale grey.

General comments. Poorly named the Ochreous Pug: even fresh specimens tend to have a washed-out appearance, the only clearly defined feature being the conspicuous and relatively large black discal spot on the forewings.

Illustrations. • E. indigata (Ochreous Pug), with larva: Barrett. • E. subumbrata, E. irriguata, E. indigata and E. pusillata, with larvae: Barrett. • E. indigata (Ochreous Pug), with other Pugs: South. • E. indigata, with 15 other pugs illustrated by Hubner (1790–1817). • E. indigata (Ochreous Pug), with other Pugs: Swain.


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. British insects: Pug moths (Lepidoptera-Geometridae). Version: 29th December 2011. http://delta-intkey.com’.

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