Moths of North Carolina
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3 NC Records

Crambus youngellus Kearfott, 1908 - Young's Grass-veneer Moth

Superfamily: Pyraloidea Family: CrambidaeSubfamily: CrambinaeTribe: CrambiniP3 Number: 800937.00 MONA Number: 5349.00
Comments: The genus Crambus includes around 155 species that are distributed globally. Some of the species are significant pests that can cause damage to agricultural crops, lawns and rangelands. This is one of 41 species in this genus that occur in North America north of Mexico (Pohl and Nanz, 2023), and one of fifteen species that occur in North Carolina.
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Kearfott (1908).                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The following description is based on Kearfott’s (1908) original description based on specimens from Canada. The labial palps, head, thorax and abdomen are all white when viewed from above, while the palps have an ochreous brown wash on the sides. The antenna is grayish white, and the legs white with brown dusting and banding. The forewing has a bright ocherous brown ground color, with a somewhat darker shade along the costal edge. A large silvery white stripe is present on the costal half of the wing. It gradually widens from its origin on the wing base to near the middle of the wing, then sharply angles to a sharp point that ends just before the subterminal line. The stripe is bounded by dark brown around its entire perimeter except where it touches the basal portion of the costa. The subterminal line is reddish-brown and outwardly angled, with the apex near the center of the wing. A silvery white patch fills the area between the angle of the subterminal line and the tip of the silvery white stripe. On the costa just before the subterminal line there is a long, narrow, triangular, outwardly oblique white mark, and beyond the line a much smaller white costal stripe. The costal stripe is followed distally by a light brown triangular mark with a white center, a small, white, arc-shaped mark, and a black terminal line that ends near the center of the outer margin. From there, a series of four or five black dots continue to the tornus. The dorsal edge of the wing is narrowly silvery white from the base to the tornus. When an individual is resting with the wings folded, it creates the impression of a long, white, continuous stripe from the palps to the tornal region. The cilia are iridescent pearly white, while the hindwing is light gray with paler cilia. Crambus youngellus is generally similar to C. agitatellus, but the latter lacks the the white band on resting individuals that is due to the white dorsal margins, thorax, head and palps.
Wingspan: 17-18.5 mm (Kearfott, 1908).
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: Crambus youngellus is a mostly northern species that is found in eastern North America from Maine and other New England states southward to New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia, and westward to Pennsylvania, Quebec and Ontario. Isolated records that may reflect geographic disjuncts are also known from northern Indiana, Wisconsin and North Carolina. As of 2023, we have only three records and all are from the east-central Coastal Plain.
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: The adults fly from June through August in different areas of the range. As of 2023, our records are all from mid- to late-June.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: This species is commonly found in bog habitats in the northern part of the range (Klots, 1963), but we have no specific information on habitat use in North Carolina.
Larval Host Plants: The plant hosts are undocumented. - View
Observation Methods: The adults are attracted to lights.
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR [S1-S2]
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: This appears to be a rare species within the state, with only three records from the east-central Coastal Plain where the species reaches its southernmost range limit.

 Photo Gallery for Crambus youngellus - Young's Grass-veneer Moth

Photos: 5

Recorded by: Michael P. Morales on 2022-06-12
Sampson Co.
Recorded by: Michael P. Morales on 2022-06-12
Sampson Co.
Recorded by: Michael P. Morales on 2022-06-12
Sampson Co.
Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2020-06-29
Onslow Co.
Recorded by: J.B. Sullivan on 2006-06-22
Carteret Co.
Comment: Bold specimen.