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Genus Cosmopterix

Cosmopterix? on Dichanthelium winter rosette - Cosmopterix clandestinella St. Andrews leaf miner on Ipomoea purpurea SA539 2016 12 - Cosmopterix astrapias Cosmopterix - Cosmopterix chisosensis Cosmopterix delicatella - Cosmopterix Cosmopterix teligera - Cosmopterix Moore County leaf miner on Dichanthelium polyanthes D3127 2021 3 - Cosmopterix clandestinella Cosmopterix sp.? - Cosmopterix St. Andrews leaf miner on Digitaria filiformis D2064 2021 3.1 - Cosmopterix
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 Cosmopterigidae (Cosmet Moths)
Subfamily Cosmopteriginae
Genus Cosmopterix
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Cosmopterix Hübner, 1825
The North and South American species were reviewed by Koster (2010).
Explanation of Names
Generic epithet Cosmopterix is Greek meaning "ornamental wings." (1)
31 species recorded in our area (2).
Wingspan about 9-12 mm.
Helpful features for identifying Cosmopterix include the coloring of the antennal segments, the width and length of the basal lines (the three parallel silver lines on the wings closest to the wing base), whether or not lines are present on the thorax, and location of the silver spots that surround the transverse fascia (the wide orange band). If you include the above features in your photos, you are more likely to get an accurate ID.
Much of North America and the world.
Larvae are leaf miners in grasses, sedges, and other herbaceous plants.
Print References
Busck, A. 1906. A review of the American moths of the genus Cosmopteryx Hübner. (3)
Covell, p. 439, plate 63#8--C. gemiferella (4)
Koster, J. C. 2010. The genera Cosmopterix Hübner and Pebobs Hodges in the New World with special attention to the Neotropical fauna (Lepidoptera: Cosmopterigidae). Zoologische Mededelingen 84: 251-575. (PDF)
Internet References
adult images of C. clemensella (Larry Line, Maryland)
live adult images of holarctic species C. pulchrimella, plus description and food plant (Pedro Pires and Mark Lawlor, UK Moths)
adult image of undetermined Cosmopterix species from Australia, plus description and food plants (Graeme Cocks, U. of Sydney, Australia)
photo of leaf mine on hops leaf, caused by a European species of Cosmopterix (British Leafminers,
Cosmopterigidae - Moth Photographers Group
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.The genera Cosmopterix Hübner and Pebobs Hodges in the New World
Koster, J.C. . 2010. Zoologische Mededelingen 84: 251-575.
3. A review of the American moths of the genus Cosmopteryx Hübner
Busck, A. 1906. Proceedings of the United States National Museum 30: 707-713.
4.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.