Seq # 265450040

Gelechia rhombella (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775) Species

Last modified: Jan. 26, 2024, 11:42 a.m.

A very rare and local species in Belgium.


Family: Gelechiidae > Subfamily: Gelechiinae > Tribus: Gelechiini > Genus: Gelechia > Species: Gelechia rhombella
Vernacular names
Zwartlappalpmot (NL), Apple Groundling , Spotted Gelechia (EN), Apfel-Palpenmotte (DE)
First mention in Belgium
De Fré Ch. 1858. Catalogue des Microlépidoptères de la Belgique. — Annales de la Société entomologique belge 2: 45–162. On page 133.




Wingspan 13–16 mm. Head pale ochreous, thorax pale ochreous sprinkled brownish; palp segment 2>3; segment 2 brush-like, blackish brown, with whitish distal ring; segment 3 brown, mixed with whitish scales; Forewing pale to dark ochreous, evenly sprinkled dark brown; distal stigmata blackish, prominent; plical stigmata indistinct or absent; black spot on costal base; blackish spots on sub-apical costa; a slightly paler post-median fascia sometimes indicated.

Museum specimens

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Specimens in nature


Head and prothoracic plate brownish to black; thoracic legs light; abdomen reddish to blackish green with pair of white sub-dorsal lines, anal plate indistinct, yellowish; prolegs pale greenish; pinacula tiny, black.

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The larva lives under a web on the upper surface of the leaf between one of its edges and the midrib, keeping the leaf folded. It consumes the inner surface of the leaf which becomes reddish. Pupation in the larval habitation.
The adults are occasionally found on trunks and later come to light and sugar.

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Flight periods

The adults fly from late June till late August.

Observed on

Host plant (genera):

The larva lives on Malus spp;, often on the lower branches, preferring the youngest leaves.

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It inhabits woodland edges, gardens, parks and orchards.

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