Moths of North Carolina
Scientific Name:
Common Name:
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View PDFTortricidae Members:
Epiblema Members:
38 NC Records

Epiblema infelix Heinrich, 1923 - No Common Name

Superfamily: Tortricoidea Family: TortricidaeSubfamily: OlethreutinaeTribe: EucosminiP3 Number: 621097.00 MONA Number: 3201.00
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Wright (2002); Wright and Gilligan (2023).                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The following description is mostly based on that of Wright (2002) and Wright and Gilligan (2023). In this species the palps, head, thorax and antennae are brown. The predominant hue of the forewing can vary from dark grayish-brown to brown. A blackish gray to dark brown basal patch covers the basal fourth to third of the wing, and is followed by a white median spot that is roughly triangular and has one or two short fuscous dashes on the inner margin. The median spot extends from the inner margin to approximately two-thirds the distance to the costa where it is replaced by a contrasting region of dark scales that are concolorous with the basal patch. Its sharply defined basal edge angles obliquely outward from the dorsal margin and often contains a small, basally directed, triangular projection just forward of the inner margin. The distal edge is less well defined and fades into an area beyond the spot that is mostly brown with a few blackish marks in the pretornal area. The apical two-fifths of the costa has four pairs of whitish strigulae that are separated by reddish-brown marks and their associated gray stria. The termen has a narrow reddish-brown band that extends from the apex to the distal margin of the ocellus. The ocellus is light brown with three or four blackish dashes and is surrounded by a zone of grayish scales on the proximal, distal and tornal margins. The male costal fold extends from the wing base to the middle of the wing.

Epiblema infelix is similar to E. gibsoni, but the latter is predominantly brown and has a narrow, bright white, and sharply-edged median spot. In addition, the reddish-brown coloration that occurs between the white costal strigulae and along the termen of E. infelix are missing on E. gibsoni (Wright and Gilligan, 2023).
Forewing Length: 6.2- 8.7 mm (mean = 7.6, n = 20) for males and 9.5-10.2 mm (mean = 9.8, n =4) for females (Wright, 2002).
Adult Structural Features: Wright and Gilligan (2023) have descriptions and images of the male and female genitalia.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: The larval life history is undocumented.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: The range of Epiblema infelix is poorly documented, but scattered populations have been found throughout much of the eastern U.S. Wright (2002) identified specimens from Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. As of 2024, we have one record from the Piedmont and all others from either the Sandhills or lower-elevation sites in the Blue Ridge.
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Flight Dates:
 High Mountains (HM) ‚Č• 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Flight Comments: Wright (2002) reported that the adults fly from early April to early July in different areas of the range, with a seasonal peak from mid-April to mid-June. As of 2023, our records range from early-April through mid-July, with a seasonal peak in April and May.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Most of our records are from fire-maintained communities in the Sandhills that have a well-developed ground cover of forbs. Records from the mountains are from lower-elevational sites with a mixture of forests, fields and disturbed habitats such as roadways.
Larval Host Plants: The hosts are apparently undocumented, but are presumed to be members of the Asteraceae. - View
Observation Methods: The adults are attracted to lights.
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR S2S3
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: This species appears to be uncommon throughout its range, with the Sandhills supporting the most robust populations in the state.

 Photo Gallery for Epiblema infelix - No common name

Photos: 4

Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-05-19
Scotland Co.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-05-19
Scotland Co.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2021-05-10
Scotland Co.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2021-05-10
Scotland Co.