35.160 Stenolechia gemmella (Linnaeus, 1758)

Status and Distribution

Widespread but local over much of England, apparently very local in south-east and south-west England and Wales. Single records only from Ireland (in the south-west) and the Channel Islands (Jersey); not recorded in Scotland.


National Status: 


Bradley & Fletcher no: 

Photographer: ©P Parsons
Location: South Wales

Provisional Map

Maps updated with all data received by January 2020.

    Set Specimens

    Stenolechia gemmella coll. 31.viii.1985, Hembury Woods, Devon (Photo: R J Heckford)

    Dissection Group

    Foodplant and Larval Feeding Signs

    Quercus spp. (oak), see plant distribution map for Q. robur (sessile oak).

    Causes withering and sometimes death of young leaves and occasional swelling of the shoot. Frass is ejected through two or three small exit holes.

    Foodplant Map


    Oak woodland and isolated mature oaks in hedgerows and parks.

    Finding the Moth

    Rests on oak trunks in bark crevices during the day.  At night is attracted to light.

    Similar Species

    The much smaller size and narrow, pointed wings distinguish it from some of the more variable Carpatolechia species, particularly when a more fuscous infused specimen of S. gemmella is encountered.

    Stenolechiodes pseudogemmellus is a central and south-eastern European species that is very similar to S. gemmella but flies in April and May. The May 2013 British record of S. gemmella was critically examined to exclude this species.

    Larval Occurrence

    Larval Occurrence

    Flight Period

    Flight Period

    Single brooded, from late June to mid-September. One recent confirmed record involved a female found in a light trap on 4th May 2013, confirmed by dissection. It should be noted that a very similar species (Stenolechiodes pseudogemmellus) occurs in central Europe and flies in April and May - this species was excluded in this case.

    Earliest: 26th June 2009 (VC49)

    Latest: 30th September 2011 (VC58)