|scientific name Mompha eloisella |
Open areas with Evening Primrose (Oenothera spp.)
Late June, early June to late July in the eastern parts of its range (Dickerson & Weiss 1920), Covell (1984) states May to August.
Unmistakeable, the forewing is white with the outer third suffused with orange brown markings encompassing several white triangles and mixed with silver markings. Several brown spots are present in the basal two-thirds of the wing. A long curved scale tuft extends from the middle of the outer margin where the fringe is a three-tiered series of white scales with black tips. The forewing is four to eight millimetres in length, though normally closer to eight. The mature larva is thirteen millimetres in length and yellowish white. It is distinctly segmented and the head is mottled with reddish brown (Dickerson & Weiss, 1920).
Hibernates as a larva inside the stem in cells where it can easily be found in the winter (Forbes 1923). In a primrose stem they tend to be in the lower portions of the main shoot or occasionally in the side shoots and there may be anywhere from one or two to thirty or more in one plant. During April and May the larva spins a cocoon in the cell and pupates inside it in late May to mid June. Eggs are laid on leaves and probably stems, and larvae start to bore in the stems, making longitudinal cavities under the bark and between the pith and bark. There are many reared parasitoids of this species including six Hymenoptera and one mite (Dickerson & Weiss 1920).
Of no concern, but likely restricted in distribution in Alberta.
Bores in the stems of Evening Primrose (Oenothera spp.)
In Alberta only known from Lethbridge. Widespread across southern Canada from Nova Scotia through to British Columbia, south to Florida, Texas, and Arizona (Covell 1984; Dickerson & Weiss, 1920).
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