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Family Coleophoridae - Casebearer Moths

1349  - Coleophora lineapulvella Coleophora quadruplex? - Coleophora quadruplex Micro-moth - possibly Coleoophora quadruplex ??? - Coleophora A Striped Coleophora - Coleophora Coleophora Unknown moth - Coleophora mayrella C. spinella ex Malus sp. - Coleophora spinella Unknown moth in Alabama - Coleophora mayrella
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Gelechioidea (Twirler Moths and kin)
Family Coleophoridae (Casebearer Moths)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Coleophoridae Bruand, 1850
Explanation of Names
Coleophoridae from the type genus Coleophora (Hübner), from Greek meaning "case bearer." (1)
They are called casebearers because the larvae live in portable cases made of plant material, frass and silk.
Small to very small moths, wingspan 5-26 mm.
Wings lancelike, usually one color; sometimes streaked or dusted with other colors.
Larvae mine in leaves, seeds and (rarely) stems.
Life Cycle
From the second instar onward coleophorid larvae spend their entire life in a portable case that they make, using silk, host plant material, or a combination of both (with no variation within species). Case shape and construction is very often species specific, particularly when coupled with host plant.
Some species, overwinter as fully grown larvae, others need to feed in the spring to complete their development.
[excerpts of edited quote by Jean-Francois Landry, copied from John Himmelman's website]
Casebearers move about from leaf to leaf during the summer but in fall they carry their cases to a sheltered spot on the bark where the overwinter.(2)
Print References
(3), page 441.
Works Cited
1.An accentuated list of the British Lepidoptera, with hints on the derivation of the names.
Anonymous. 1858. The Entomological Societies of Oxford and Cambridge.
2.Hidden Company that Trees Keep: Life from Treetops to Root Tips
James B. Nardi. 2023. Princeton University Press.
3.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.