35.111 Scrobipalpa murinella (Duponchel, 1843)

Status and Distribution

Extremely local.

Found at a few sites in south Aberdeenshire, parts of the inner Western Isles of Scotland, parts of The Burren in Ireland and at single sites in West Sutherland and East Perthshire (Scotland) and Fermanagh (Northern Ireland).

National Status: 

pRDB 2

Bradley & Fletcher no: 

Photographer: Photo wanted

Provisional Map

Maps updated with all data received by January 2020.

    Set Specimens

    Dissection Group

    Foodplant and Larval Feeding Signs

    Antennaria dioica (mountain everlasting), see plant distribution map.

    Scrobipalpa murinella feeding signs (Photo: R J Heckford)  Scrobipalpa murinella foodplant Aberdeenshire 2016 (Photo: S Palmer)  Scrobipalpa murinella foodplant Scotland (Photo: S Palmer)

    Most obvious signs are the blotch mines mainly in the lower leaves.

    Foodplant Map


    Scrobipalpa murinella habitat, Dinnet (Photo: S M Palmer  Scrobipalpa murinella habitat Aberdeenshire 2016 (Photo: S Palmer)  Scrobipalpa murinella habitat Aberdeenshire 2016 (Photo: S Palmer)

    Scrobipalpa murinella habitat Scotland 2019 (Photo: S Palmer)

    Dry heathery grassland with stands of the hostplant, rocky areas and, in Ireland, limestone pavement.

    Finding the Moth

    Larva: mines the stems and leaves with a preference for the lower leaves which it completely hollows out towards the tip. It will readily move from one leaf to another spinning a slight web as it progresses. Later it feeds within the flowers and seedheads.

    Adult: has occasionally been found amongst the larval foodplants.

    Similar Species

    The small size and rather plain grey-brown forewings should help differentiate if from pale or worn specimens of the larger S. artemisiella.

    Larval Occurrence

    Larval Occurrence

    Flight Period

    Flight Period

    Single brooded with few flight records, those being between mid-May and early June (latest on the 9th in The Burren).