elegant grass-veneer

(Microcrambus elegans)

elegant grass-veneer
Photo by Alfredo Colon
  Hodges #

5420

 
 
Conservation Status
  IUCN Red List

not listed

     
  NatureServe

NNR - Unranked

SNR - Unranked

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Elegant grass-veneer is small crambid snout moth. It occurs in the United States and southern Canada east of the Great Plains, and in Mexico. It is the most common Microcrambus moth in the United States, and is common in Minnesota. Adults are found from June to August in fields and grassy areas. Larvae feed on grasses.

Adults are narrow-bodied. They are 516 to (8 to 10 mm) in length and have a wingspan of ½ to (12 to 15 mm).

The forewings are white or silvery white with brown and dark brown markings. They are moderately to densely peppered and shaded with brown and dark brown specks. On each wing, there is a conspicuous, dark brown, triangular patch near the wing base, and a broad, curved line in the middle. Dense, dark brown specks in the postmedial area provide a dark shading below the curved line. When the wings are closed these marks form a frowning face that has been compared to a Halloween mask. There is a brown band in the postmedial area and a thin, straight, brown line in the subterminal area (subterminal or ST line). The band is separated from the ST line by a thin white border. There are seven short, blackish-brown dashes, one on each vein, between the ST line and the fringe. The fringe is brown. The hindwing is brownish-gray and has a wide fringe.

The antennae are slender and thread-like. There are two large compound eyes on the side of the head and a single, well-developed, simple eye (ocellus) near the top edge of each compound eye. The finger-like sensory organs (palps) attached to the mouth are moderately long and densely hairy. They are projected forward, appearing like a fuzzy snout.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

Total Length: 516 to (8 to 10 mm)

Wingspan: ½ to (12 to 15 mm)

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Fields and grassy areas

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Season

 
 

One generation per year. June to August

 
     
 

Behavior

 
 

Adults rest with their wings held tight to the body, forming a tubular shape. They are active at night (diurnal) and at dawn and dusk (crepuscular), and will come to light.

 
     
 

Life Cycle

 
 

 

 
     
 

Larva Hosts

 
 

Grasses

 
     
 

Adult Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

21, 24, 29, 30, 72, 75, 82, 83.

 
  12/14/2020      
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

 

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
 

Order

Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths)  
 

Suborder

Glossata  
 

Infraorder

Neolepidoptera  
  Parvorder Heteroneura  
  No Rank Ditrysia  
  No Rank Obtectomera  
 

Superfamily

Pyraloidea (pyralid and crambid snout moths)  
 

Family

Crambidae (crambid snout moths)  
 

Subfamily

Crambinae (crambine snout moths)  
 

Tribe

Crambini (grass-veneers)  
 

Genus

Microcrambus  
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Crambus terminellus

Microcrambus terminellus

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

elegant grass-veneer

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Ocellus

Simple eye; an eye with a single lens. Plural: ocelli.

 

Palp

Short for pedipalp. A segmented, finger-like process of an arthropod; one is attached to each maxilla and two are attached to the labium. They function as sense organs in spiders and insects, and as weapons in scorpions. Plural: palpi.

 

 

 

 

 

       
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Alfredo Colon
       
  elegant grass-veneer    
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
       
       
       

 

Camera

     
Slideshows
   
  Microcrambus
Bill Keim
 
  Microcrambus  
 
About

Family: Crambidae
Subfamily: Crambinae
Tribe: Crambini
Genus: Microcrambus

- Microcrambus bigutellus (Gold-stripe Grass-veneer)
- Microcrambus elegans (Elegant Grass-veneer)

 
     

 

slideshow

       
Visitor Videos
   

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Other Videos
 
  Elegant Grass-veneer Moth (Crambidae: Microcrambus elegans) Lateral View
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Jul 29, 2011

Photographed at Grand Forks, North Dakota (29 July 2011). Thank you to Jay Greenberg (@Bugguide.net) for confirming the identity of this specimen!

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
Visitor Sightings
   

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Alfredo Colon
8/13/2019

Location: Woodbury, MN

elegant grass-veneer


 
         
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
         

 

 

 

Binoculars


Created: 12/14/2020

Last Updated:

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