Moths of North Carolina
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Common Name:
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View PDFTineidae Members:
Montescardia Members:
2 NC Records

Montescardia fuscofasciella (Chambers, 1875) - No Common Name

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Superfamily: Tineoidea Family: TineidaeSubfamily: ScardiinaeTribe: [Scardiini]P3 Number: 300201.00 MONA Number: 310.00
Comments: Montescardia is a small genus with three described species from northern temperate regions, including one in the eastern US.
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Robinson (1986)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The following description is based in part on that of Robinson (1986). The vertex and the frons are pale buff. The labial palp is off-white and strongly flecked with brown on the outer surface. The maxillary palp is cream and flecked with brown above on the basal segments. It is 5-segmented and elongated, reaching the apex of the second segment of the labial palp. The antenna scape is dark brown and the flagellum medium brown. The thorax and tegula are speckled brown and cream. The forewing ground color is brownish cream with ill-defined orange-brown along the veins. The ground is strongly speckled with dark brown to form strong solid marks. The most conspicuous mark is a dark brown angulated fascia just beyond one-half the wing length. The fascia is posteriorly oblique and broadest on the dorsal half before narrowing and angulating anteriorly towards the costa. A pair of blotches are present at one-fourth that include a relatively large, posteriorly oblique costal blotch and a smaller dorsal blotch. These are occasionally united to form a complete fascia. A third prominent blotch is present in the subterminal region. In addition to these larger marks, the costa has a series of dark spots along its length, including a pair or triplet of small spots just in front of the central fascia. The cilia are light fuscous with three or four darker patches within. The hindwing is light grayish brown, with ill-defined paler mottling at the apex. The legs are buff colored with darker bands along their length.
Wingspan: 27 mm (Robinson, 1986)
Adult Structural Features: Robinson (1986) has a description and illustration of the female genitalia. The elongated maxillary palps are distinctive.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: The life history and ecology of the larvae are undocumented.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Montescardia fuscofasciella is found in the eastern US where there are a few scattered records from Maryland and vicinity westward to Illinois, and southward to Tennessee, northern Alabama, and western North Carolina. As of 2020, we have only two records from the mountains.
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Flight Dates:
 High Mountains (HM) ≥ 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

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Flight Comments: This species is univoltine with a relatively short flight season. Adult have been observed from June through August, with a peak in activity in July and August. As of 2020, our one dated record is from 10 August.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: The larvae have never been reported and their specific habitat requirements are unknown. They are presumed to be fungivores and are likely associated with hardwood trees.
Larval Host Plants: This species belongs to a group of tineids (Scardiinae) whose members are all believed to be fungal specialists. The larvae feed in either the fruiting bodies of bracket fungi, or in the wood of dead or moribound trees that have been permeated with the fungal hyphae (Robinson, 1986).
Observation Methods: The adults appear to rarely visit lights.
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR SU
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: This is a seemingly uncommon species throughout its range. As of 2020 we have only two records and only one that is recent.