Status and Distribution
Rare, recorded only from two coastal areas in England (in East Sussex and the Isle of Wight) and one in the Channel Islands (Guernsey).
Bradley & Fletcher no:
Maps updated with all data received by January 2020.
Foodplant and Larval Feeding Signs
Plantago coronopus (buck’s-horn plantain), see plant distribution map.
There are no obvious external signs of feeding damage. A slight compression or tightening of the empty seed husks against the stem occurs as the larva matures. With a hand lens, fine grains of sand or grit are visible affixed to the silken tube attached to the stem.
Finding the Moth
Larva: feeds on the seeds from beneath a dense silken tube fixed against the central stalk of a seedhead from September to March. The larva cuts an elongate hole in the stem and spins a dense but very thin cocoon in the stem, usually just below the seed-head, for pupation from March to early May.
Adult: can be disturbed amongst the foodplant during the day, its small size and shape being reminiscent of a Coleophorid.
Its small size and the greyish white forewing colour, speckled black, with two pale ochre-yellow stripes, readily distinguish this species from other members of the genus.
Single-brooded from late April to mid June.
Earliest: 1st May 1993 (VC113).
Latest: 23rd June 2006 (VC14).