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Species Olethreutes auricapitana - Gold-headed Leafroller - Hodges#2830

anthomyiid - Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana Olethreutes auricapitana
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Tortricoidea (Tortricid Moths)
Family Tortricidae (Tortricid Moths)
Subfamily Olethreutinae
Tribe Olethreutini
Genus Olethreutes
Species auricapitana (Gold-headed Leafroller - Hodges#2830)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Olethreutes auricapitana (Walsingham, 1879)
Sericoris auricapitana Walsingham, 1879 (1)
Explanation of Names
Specific epithet from Latin meaning "gold-headed" for the "bright orange-yellow" head. (1)
Wingspan 10-12 mm. (2)
Adult - Except for gold edging along the apex and lustrous blue-gray interfascial scaling, the forewing appears black. (3).
Nova Scotia to Missouri, south to Virginia and Alabama.
When larvae feed on fronds of ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris), they cause a gall within the last ten or so pinnae of the unfurling frond (Aderkas and Peterson 1987).
Larvae reported by Heinruch, 1926 to to feed on yellow birch (Betula alleghaniensis Britton var. alleghaniensis, =lutea).(2) This is thought to refer to the undescribed species (see remarks section).
DNA analysis at BOLD indicates there are two species going under this name. It appears that true auricapitana is a fern feeding species, and there is an undescribed species near auricapitana that feeds on birch. BOLD:AAI3236 is referable to the fern feeding phenotype, and BOLD:AAF4647 corresponds to the birch feeding phenotype. While the species seen on this page is more likely than not to be true auricapitana, this conclusion is far from definitive. The type specimen is apparently in the British Museum, and examination of it would make the proper association clear. (With information from M. Sabourin, pers. comm. to A. Hunt, 6-8 vii 2020.)

One of several Nearctic Olethreutes s. l. species with iridescent spots on the forewings:

      [missing]                     [missing]                     [missing]                    

astrologana                  coruscana                    ferrolineana                 metallica                      nordeggana                 sordidana                     galaxana

siderana                      concretana                   auricapitana                 nr. auricapitana            albiciliana                    agilana
See Also
The undescribed species nr. auricapitana is similar but with sparser gold markings and a darker head.
Pristerognatha agilana has a brownish-gray head which helps to separate it from Olethreutes auricapitana, a moth with gold scales on the frons and vertex, Gilligan et al. (2008) (3). There are differences in the patterning of the forewings as well.
Olethreutes albiciliana is similar as well but has a brown spot on the palpi and white portions of the forewing fringe among other differences.
Print References
Aderkas, P. von & B.V. Peterson. 1987. Chirosia betuleti (Ringdahl) (Diptera: Anthomyiidae) a gall-former on the ostrich fern, Matteuccia struthiopteris, with notes on other insect-fern associates. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 89(3): 532-547.
Walsingham, Lord. 1879. North-American Torticidae. Illustrations of typical specimens of Lepidoptera Heterocera in the collection of the British Museum, 4: 33. (1)
Works Cited
1.North-American Torticidae
Thomas, Lord Walsingham. 1879. Illustrations of typical specimens of Lepidoptera Heterocera in the collection of the British Museum. 4.
2.Revision of the North American moths of the subfamilies Laspeyresiinae and Olethreutinae
Carl Heinrich. 1926. Bulletin of the United States National Museum 132: 1-216.
3.Olethreutine Moths of the Midwestern United States, An Identification Guide
Gilligan, Todd M., Donald J. Wright, and Loran D. Gibson. 2008. Ohio Biological Survey, P.O. Box 21370, Columbus, Ohio 43221-0370.