Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFEriocraniidae Members: 18 NC Records

Dyseriocrania griseocapitella (Walsingham, 1898) - Chinquapin Leaf-miner Moth



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Taxonomy
Superfamily: Eriocranoidea Family: EriocraniidaeSubfamily: [Eriocraniinae]Tribe: [Eriocraniini]P3 Number: 70001.00 MONA Number: 3.00
Comments: Dyseriocrania is a small genus of primitive moths. There are only two recognized species in North America, and only one in North Carolina.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984)Online Photographs: MPG; BugGuide; BAMONATechnical Description, Adults: Davis (1978)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Davis (1978)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The following description of the adults is based on the comprehensive revision of the superfamily Eriocranioidea by Davis (1978). The face, upper head, and thorax are covered with long, predominantly white hairs that are intermixed with fuscous to produce a conspicuous light brown tuft. The antenna is brown above, slightly more than half the length of the forewing, and has 43-47 segments. The forewing is golden bronze and heavily mottled with minute specks of darker scales which are iridescent bluish purple. The apical fringe is pronounced and colored bronzy brown. The hindwing is paler and grayish with a slight purplish luster. The legs are white ventrally and light fuscous dorsally. This species is easily identified by a combination of the conspicuous tuft of dark hairs on the head and thorax, the conspicuous apical fringe, and the presence of scattered, iridescent bluish purple scales on the forewing.
Wingspan: Males: 10-13 mm; females: 9-12.5 mm (Davis, 1978).
Adult Structural Features: The following is based on Davis (1978). Males: The uncus is shallowly bilobed, and the lobes are reduced and widely separated. The anal tube is membranous, with minute, scattered spines. The basal sclerites are absent. The vinculum has a caudal margin that is superficially bilobed. The anterior margin has elongated apophyses that are approximately 0.75 the length of the undivided vinculum. The juxta is broadest anteriorly, and tapers caudally to a narrow, minutely clefted apex. The greatest width is approximately 0.6-0.65 its length. The base of the aedeagus is prominently swollen, while the ventral branch of the aedeagus is very slender, simple, and without any apical projections or basal lobes. Females: The apex of the ovipositor is acuminate and the lateral edges are serrulate, with 10-12 minute teeth. The bursa copulatrix is relatively elongate, and extends noticeably beyond the apices of the anterior apophyses. The walls of the corpus bursae are entirely membranous. The vaginal sclerite is depressed, not darkly sclerotized, and lacks a ventral keel. It is moderately broad, with its greatest width being about 0.45-0.5 its length.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: Populations are univoltine. The adults first emerge as new leaves begin to expand in late winter to early spring. Females insert eggs singly into leaves as they are expanding, usually near the edge and over the outer half of the leaf. Hatchlings emerge after 7 to 15 days, and initially create a narrow, linear mine that extends toward the leaf margin (Davis, 1978). This linear section is usually obliterated as the mine is enlarged into a somewhat inflated blotch, which causes a characteristic fissure to form in the leaf. The dark frass is deposited in stringy masses, or in compact pellets or short strips (Eiseman, 2019). The blotch eventually becomes full depth, which causes the mine to become semitransparent. Within 7 to 10 days the larva drops to the ground and burrows into the soil as deep as 30 cm (Davis, 1978). It then constructs a tough oval cocoon from silk and small particles of soil. The larva diapauses inside this cocoon for several months until it pupates during the winter. The pupae have greatly developed mandibles that facilitate digging through the soil to the surface. After emerging from the ground, the pupa remains inactive for an indefinite period until final ecdysis at the time of leaf-out (Davis, 1978).
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Dyseriocrania griseocapitella ranges widely along the Atlantic states of North America from Nova Scotia south to northern Florida. It occurs as far west as Minnesota, Missouri, and Louisiana. In North Carolina, populations occur in all three physiographic provinces, but as of 2019 have only been found in the northern and central tiers of counties.
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: Populations are univoltine and the adults are active when the host plants are leafing out in late winter or early spring. This occurs during March and April in North Carolina.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Populations are found in a wide variety of habitats with oaks and chestnuts.
Larval Host Plants: Larvae are rather generalized leaf-miners on members of the Fagaceae. The known hosts include American Chestnut (Castanea dentata), Chinese Chestnut (C. mollissima), Chinkapin (C. pumila), White Oak (Quercus alba), Southern Red Oak (Q. falcata), Bear Oak (Q. ilicifolia), Water Oak (Q. nigra), Northern Red Oak (Q. rubra), and Black Oak (Q. velutina).
Observation Methods: The adults are attracted to UV-lights. Populations can also be documented by locating the mines on expanding, tender leaves. The oviposition site often forms a hole as the leaf expands, and the frass is at least partly in long threads (Eiseman, 2019). Adults can be reared by collecting active mines and allowing the larvae to pupate within soil in jars or other containers.
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General Oak-Hickory Forests
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR S2S4
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
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 Photo Gallery for Dyseriocrania griseocapitella - Chinquapin Leaf-miner Moth

Photos: 19

Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2020-05-22
Madison Co.
Comment: An upper surface mine on Allegheny Chinquapin (Castanea pumila). The mine is initially linear, then expands into a blotch at the leaf margin.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2020-05-22
Madison Co.
Comment: A backlit image of a mine on Castanea pumila. Note the conspicuous stringy frass.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2020-05-02
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2020-04-24
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2020-04-13
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Kyle Kittelberger on 2020-04-09
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2020-04-03
Buncombe Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2020-03-28
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2020-03-16
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-04-29
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-04-16
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2019-04-10
Buncombe Co.
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Recorded by: J. A. Anderson on 2018-04-14
Surry Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2018-04-06
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger on 2017-04-12
Gates Co.
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Recorded by: T. DeSantis on 2015-03-31
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2014-04-23
Warren Co.
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Recorded by: Harry Wilson on 2011-04-17
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Lori Owenby on 2011-04-08
Catawba Co.
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