Elachista velutina Kaila, 2011
ELACHISTIDAE ,   GELECHIOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


(Photo: courtesy of Lauri Kaila, from Elachistine Moths of Australia)

The Caterpillar of this species is grey, smooth, long, and thin, with a flattened head, and has several pale lines along the body, and pale areas between segments.

The caterpillars have been found feeding on sedges in CYPERACEAE, including

  • Pithy Sword-sedge ( Lepidosperma longitudinale ).

    The caterpillars bore upwards initially into a leaf of their foodplant then turn and bore downwards, creating a widening mine between the upper and lower skins of the leaf. The mine is filled with frass. The caterpillar grows to a length of about 1 cm.


    (Photo: courtesy of Lauri Kaila, from Elachistine Moths of Australia)

    When mature: the caterpillar exits the mine and forms a pupa attached to a leaf. The pupa is brown.


    (Photo: courtesy of Lauri Kaila, from Elachistine Moths of Australia)

    The adult moths have grey-brown wings, with some variable dark marks on the forewings. The moths have a wingspan of about 8 mms.

    The species has been found in

  • South Australia.
  •    

    Typical leaf mines, filled with frass
    (Photo: courtesy of Lauri Kaila, from Elachistine Moths of Australia)


    Further reading

    Lauri Kaila,
    Elachistine Moths of Australia: (Lepidoptera: Gelechioidea: Elachistidae),
    Monographs on Australian Lepidoptera Vol. 11,
    CSIRO Publishing, 2011, pp. 17, 20, 25, 56, 59, 96, 97, 99-102, 261, 277, 292, 316, 317, 392, 393,
    including Pls. 4.8, 4.9, 20.4, 35.2; Figs. 141, 142, 344, 345
    .


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    (written 14 July 2017)