Seq # 245110010

Esperia sulphurella (Fabricius, 1775) Species

Last modified: March 4, 2021, 3:29 p.m.

A common species in the northern part of Belgium, not so common in the south.


Family: Oecophoridae > Subfamily: Oecophorinae > Genus: Esperia > Species: Esperia sulphurella
Vernacular names
Esperiamot (NL), Schwefelgelber Totholzfalter (DE)
Esperia orbonella (Hübner, 1813)
First mention in Belgium
De Sélys-Longchamps E. 1844. Énumération des insectes Lépidoptères de la Belgique. — Mémoires de la Société royale des Sciences de Liége 2: 1–35. On page 25 (as orbonella). view page




Museum specimens

Specimens in nature


Pearly white, oblong-ovate.

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Whitish to grey; head capsule and prothoracic plate chestnut-brown; last abdominal segment brown.

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Pale yellowish brown in a tough silken cocoon.

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The eggs are oviposited singly or up to three in crevices in dead bark and covered with perianal hairs.
The caterpillars construct silken tubes containing frass and feed from these tubes from June–July, hibernating till January to April. The duration of the larval stage depends much on the mildness or severity of the winter.
Pupation takes place in the larval feeding place from January till May.
The adults are active especially during morning sunshine near the breeding sites. Sometimes assembling in larger numbers when females are present. The occasionally come to light.

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Flight periods

One generation a year: from the end of April till June.

Observed on

Dead wood and Fungi

The larva lives on dead wood and on fungi growing on dead wood like: Quercus, Robinia and Tamarix. It has also been observed on dead branches of Ulex.

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Woodland, gardens, parks, old hedgerows where dead wood is present.

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