Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFNepticulidae Members: 5 NC Records

Stigmella fuscotibiella (Clemens, 1862) - No Common Name


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Nepticuloidea Family: NepticulidaeP3 Number: 160037.00 MONA Number: 82.00
Comments: Members of the genus Stigmella are a group of small leaf-mining moths that typically create linear mines, although a few species form linear-blotch or blotch mines. Newton and Wilkinson (1982) recognized 51 species in their revision on the North American fauna, and new discoveries have since raised the total to around 57 species. Almost all species are specialists and rarely use more than one genus of host plants. Host-specificity, mine characteristics, and genitalic differences are helpful in recognizing closely related forms that are externally similar.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIFTechnical Description, Adults: Wilkinson and Scoble (1979)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Braun, 1917                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The following description is from Wilkinson and Scoble (1979). The palps are gray and lustrous. The antenna is dark gray and the eye-caps shining white. The tuft on the front of the head and vertex is orchreous, while the collar is dull white. The thoraxis slate-gray with bronze reflections. The upper abdomen is gray, with a silvery gray luster. The ground color of the forewing is slate-gray with bronzy reflections. The is one white, medial to postmedial fascia of variable width that is shining silver. The fringe is gray marginally and white at tip. The legs are darkish gray and lustrous, with pale ochreous patches. The tarsi are gray.
Wingspan: 3.4-5.4 mm for males and 4.4-5.0 mm for females (Wilkinson and Scoble, 1979).
Adult Structural Features: The following description of the genitalia is from Wilkinson and Scoble (1979). Males: The tegumen is broad and bluntly rounded apically. The saccus is large and bilobed. The uncus reaches beyond the tegumen. It gradually tapers and has two papillate lobes. The gnathos is heavily sclerotized and comprises a pair of medial, horn-like processes. These arise from a stout base, the corners of which are produced into short, lateral processes. The valves are broad and bilobed apically. The transtilla is stout, and has long lateral arms and a short horizontal bar. The aedeagus is straight. The vesica has a number of stout spine-like cornuti and an arcuate, striate plate. Females: The anal papillae are simple. The ductus bursae is short (approximately the length of the apophyses) and has an unadorned accessory sac. The bursa copulatrix is elongate, and covered with short rows of minute pectinations and a signum comprising a band of scale-like pectinations the almost encircle the bursa. The anterior apophyses are arcuate. They are broad for the basal two-thirds of the length, but narrow anteriorly, each with a small process that appears to splinter from the base. The posterior apophyses are thin, long, straight, and swollen basally.
Immatures and Development: The mine is a gradually broadening linear tract that often becomes distinctly blotchy at the end. The mine is sometimes straight, but often is bent back on itself toward the end. The frass forms a dark, broken line in the linear portion, but is much less compact in the blotch (Braun, 1917; Eiseman, 2019). The cocoon is ocherous or brownish.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos, especially where associated with known host plants.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Stigmella fuscotibiella is widely distributed across Canada from the Yukon Territory, Northwest Territories, and Alberta eastward to Nova Scotia (Eiseman, 2019; BOLD). In the eastern US, it has been found in New England westward to Ohio and southward to Kentucky and North Carolina. As of 2020, we have records from the inner Coastal Plain and eastern Piedmont.
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)

Click on graph to enlarge
Flight Comments: There are probably three generations a year in southern populations, and perhaps only two in northern populations. Braun (1917) found larvae from June through October in Ohio and Kentucky.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: The larvae are specialists of willows (Robinson et al., 2010; Eiseman, 2019), which are generally found in open, wet habitats.
Larval Host Plants: The known hosts include Pussy Willow (S. discolor) and Black Willow (S. nigra). As of 2020, all of our records are from Black Willow.
Observation Methods: The adults appear to rarely visit lights and most records are for either leaf mines or adults that were reared from mines.
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for Shoreline Shrublands
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR SU
State Protection:
Comments: We currently do not have sufficient information on the distribution and abundance of this species within the state to assess its conservation status.

 Photo Gallery for Stigmella fuscotibiella - No Common Name

Photos: 12

Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2022-06-27
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2022-06-27
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2021-11-27
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2021-11-27
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2021-11-27
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2018-06-19
Wake Co.
Comment: Unoccupied mines on Salix nigra--gradually-widening linear mines with central frass trail, mostly on upper side of leaves.
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2018-06-19
Wake Co.
Comment: Unoccupied mines on Salix nigra--gradually-widening linear mines with central frass trail, mostly on upper side of leaves.
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2017-09-18
Scotland Co.
Comment: Unoccupied mines on Salix nigra--gradually-widening linear mines with central frass trail, mostly on upper side of leaves.
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2017-09-18
Scotland Co.
Comment: Unoccupied mines on Salix nigra--gradually-widening linear mines with central frass trail, mostly on upper side of leaves.
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2017-07-24
Durham Co.
Comment: Unoccupied mines on Salix nigra--gradually-widening linear mines with central frass trail, mostly on upper side of leaves.
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2017-07-24
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Tracy S. Feldman on 2017-07-24
Durham Co.
Comment: