and case-bearer: Larva mines leaves of Caryophyllaceae. The
final case is tubular, 8 mm long, with a dorsal keel which forks
and continues as two ridges to the anal end of the case (British
larval case is very distinctive when fully grown as it is a pale
pink colour and has a double dorsal keel (UKMoths).
in a trivalved tubular silken case of 8 mm long, with a mouth angle
of 25°-30°. The case is pale brown. A unique detail is the
presence of a double dorsal keel, but this only occurs when the
larva is fully developed: the foremost part of the keel remains
single, but already the fork appears before the middle (Bladmineerders van Europa).
and mine of Coleophora lithargyrinella on Stellaria
Image: © Rob Edmunds (British
Larva: The larvae of moths have a head capsule and chewing mouthparts with opposable mandibles (see video of a gracillarid larva feeding), six thoracic legs and abdominal legs (see examples).
Described by Emmet et al. (1996a) (Bladmineerders van Europa).
Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).
The adult is illustrated in UKMoths.
The male and female genitalia are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection
Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:
of year - larvae: May (British
of year - adults: Univoltine - being found in June and July
in Great Britain & Ireland: Very widespread throughout Britain,
but is found sparingly and locally (UKMoths)
including Anglesey (VC52), Caernarvonshire (VC49), Denbighshire (VC50), Herefordshire (VC36),
Merionethshire (VC48), Monmouthshire (VC35), North Aberdeenshire (VC93), North Devon (VC4), North Essex (VC19), North Wiltshire (VC7), Pembrokeshire (VC45), South Essex (VC18), South Wiltshire (VC8),
West Gloucestershire (VC34), West Kent (VC16) and West Suffolk (VC26) (NBN
favours two habitats, being found in coastal areas, where Sea campion
grows, or woodland - where its foodplant is stitchwort (UKMoths).
recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Karsholt and van Nieukerken
in Fauna Europaea). See also Ireland's NBDC interactive map.
NBN Grid Map:
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elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria,
Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Finland,
French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania,
Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden,
Switzerland and The Netherlands (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).
NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:
British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: