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Species Metzneria lappella - Burdock Seedhead Moth - Hodges#1685

Gelechiidae: Metzneria lappella - Metzneria lappella Burdock Seedhead Moth - Metzneria lappella Gelechiid - Metzneria lappella Moth - Metzneria lappella Metzneria lappella - Burdock Seedhead Moth - Hodges#1685 - Metzneria lappella Gelechiidae, Burdock Seedhead Moth, dorsal - Metzneria lappella Metzneria lappella? - Metzneria lappella Lépidoptère - Metzneria lappella
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 Gelechiidae (Twirler Moths)
Subfamily Anomologinae
Genus Metzneria
Species lappella (Burdock Seedhead Moth - Hodges#1685)
Hodges Number
Other Common Names
Burdock Seed Moth
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Metzneria lappella (Linnaeus, 1758)
Phalaena lappella Linnaeus, 1758
Explanation of Names
LAPPELLA: perhaps refers to Arctium lappa, or Great Burdock, a larval foodplant
One of 2 named species in this genus in North America.
Wingspan 12-19 mm. (1)
Larvae about 5 mm. in midwinter
Adult: forewing tan, variably streaked with yellowish-brown; most heavily streaked along costa, with dark shallow arc sometimes running from one-third to two-thirds its length; diffuse dark spot about two-fifths distance along wing near inner margin; diagonal band of short streaks runs from apex toward inner margin; hindwing lance-like with very wide fringe; top of head and thorax pale, with thin dark line down the center; labial palps long, recurved over head; antennae long, with many narrow dark rings

Larva: head brown with whitish forehead; body white, fat, grub-like, with vestigial thoracic legs and no prolegs except for tiny anal pair clasped together
throughout United States and southern Canada. (2)
native to Eurasia
fields, roadsides, waste places; adults are attracted to light
adults fly in June and July in the north; April to August in the south
larvae in late summer, fall, and spring (overwinter)
larvae feed on developing seeds of burdock (Arctium spp.)
Life Cycle
one generation per year; overwinters as a larva in seedhead of hostplant; pupates in spring inside seedhead
Parasitized by the braconid wasp Agathis malvacearum which lays eggs on larvae in burdock seed heads.
See Also
M. paucipunctella occurs in the west; its forewing is less streaked, and has dense speckling near the apex (compare images of both species and related genera at MPG)
Print References
Powell, J.A. & P.A. Opler 2009. Moths of Western North America. University of California Press. plate 7, fig. 31; p. 85. (3)
Internet References
pinned adult image by SangMi Lee (Moth Photographers Group)
presence in California; list (U. of California at Berkeley)