|scientific name Greya enchrysa |
On rockfaces, talus slopes or grassy coniferous forest where the hostplant grows.
Alberta flight records are from late June.
Davis et al. (1992) provide a detailed description of this species: Adult females have a wingspan of 17-20 mm, males15.5-20 mm. The Forewings are uniformly pale ochreous, often with a golden sheen, rarely white. The hindwings are gray. The forelegs are white ventrally, ochreous to light brown dorsally, and the metathoracic and hindlegs white. The antennae are 0.35-0.40 times the length of the forewing, with 29-32 segments. Maxillary and labial palpi white. The abdomen is white or whitish ventrally, pale brown dorsally. The apex of the female ovipositor is compressed and bluntly rounded. The male uncus is prominently bilobed, slightly constricted at base. Valva narrow, pollex sessile.
The egg is white, about 0.4 mm diameter, with a smooth chorion and reticulate micropyle. Mature larvae are up to 2.5 mm in length and 0.4mm wide.
This species was recently described (Davis et al. 1992), and was not listed as part of the Alberta fauna by Bowman (1951).
G. enchrysa passively pollinates its host when pollen stuck to the abdomen is deposited in the stigma as the moth oviposits. Figure 8 shows an ovipositing female. It can be an effective pollinator, and pollinating success is correlated with the number of eggs it deposits (Pellmyr et al. 1996).The moth is diurnal, but courtship and oviposition behaviour peaks at dusk when the winds dies down. Males fly from plant to plant courting females as they rest on flowers (Davis et al. 1992). The egg stage lasts 9-10 days. Predators of adult moths include thomisid spiders and dragonflies (Davis et al. 1992).
Larval host plants in the northwestern U.S. are Alum-root (Heuchera cylindrica and H. grossulariifolia (Saxifragaceae)), and adults also take nectar from these plants (Davis et al. 1992). H. grossulariifolia does not occur in Alberta, but H. cylindrica is found in the southern mountain region north to the Red Deer River (Moss 1992).
In Alberta, known only from specimens collected by J. McDunnough on 19 and 20 June 1923 (Davis et al. 1992). Occurs south and west throughout the drier regions of interior Washington, Idaho, Oregon and western Montana and southern B.C. (Davis et al. 1992).
Comments are published according to our submission guidelines. The EH Strickland Entomological Museum does not necessarily endorse the views expressed.