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Species Pseudotelphusa basifasciella - Hodges#1868

a white and black Moth - Pseudotelphusa basifasciella Pseudotelphusa basifasciella Pseudotelphusa basifasciella Pseudotelphusa basifasciella Stemborer of Gaura parviflora - Pseudotelphusa basifasciella - female Pseudotelphusa basifasciella
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Gelechioidea (Twirler Moths and kin)
Family Gelechiidae (Twirler Moths)
Subfamily Gelechiinae
Tribe Litini
Genus Pseudotelphusa
Species basifasciella (Pseudotelphusa basifasciella - Hodges#1868)
Hodges Number
1868
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Pseudotelphusa basifasciella (Zeller, 1873)
Gelechia basifasciella Zeller 1873
Explanation of Names
BASIFASCIELLA: translates approximately to "basal band"; probably refers to the prominent black band near the base of the forewing
Size
wingspan 10-15 mm.
Identification
Adult: forewing slender, white with two black spots along costa and several smaller spots and speckling near outer margin; thick black oblique band in basal area angles backward from costa almost to inner margin; hindwing whitish basally, shading to gray distally, with very wide pale gray fringe
Range
Texas and Arkansas to Georgia, north to Maryland
Season
adults fly in late spring and summer
Food
no information on this species
larvae of an undescribed Pseudotelphusa species in Missouri feed on leaves of oak
at least two other Pseudotelphusa species may feed on birch and serviceberry, judging from their specific epithets amelanchierella (Amelanchier=serviceberry) and betulella (Betula=birch)
Life Cycle
no information on this species
an undescribed Pseudotelphusa species in Missouri lays eggs in spring on leaves of oak as soon as the leaves have fully opened; larvae tie two overlapping leaves together with spun silk, creating a shelter within which they feed, skeletonizing the inner surface of the tied leaves; larvae mature in about 2 weeks, then drop to the ground to pupate
Remarks
By creating leaf-tie shelters early in the season, and then vacating them shortly afterward, larvae of an undescribed Pseudotelphusa species in Missouri make shelters available to various other insects, increasing the diversity of leaf-eating insects on oak trees during the summer (see PDF article in Print References below).
See Also
other Pseudotelphusa species have dark brown forewings with obscure markings (compare photos of 5 species by SangMi Lee at MPG)
Arogalea cristifasciella has an oblique black band that angles forward from the costa to the base of the wing
Print References
Lill, John T. and Robert J. Marquis. 2003. Ecosystem Engineering by Caterpillars Increases Insect Herbivore Diversity on White Oak. Ecology. 84(3): 682-690. - available online in PDF format