Saturday, 12 April 2014

Oxford Micro Query

Catches are still pretty dismal in my central Oxford garden but I did find this micro on the wall by the front door yesterday evening. After having scoured the Sterling & Parsons book the best match that I can come up with is Esperia Sulphurella though there are a few ID points which are troubling me: the leg colour is different from the book, there is a much larger thorn on the middle leg than the book and the antennae aren't in the classic pointing straight ahead resting position, nor are they they same colour. I don't know if there is some variability in these features with E. Sulphurella or if in fact this is another species altogether.

Adam Hartley

Someone on Bird Forum has suggested Psychoides filicivora which seems a much better match. Looking at photos of it on UK moths the legs and antennae match perfectly.

Presumed Psychoides filicivora


  1. Looks good for Psychoides filicivora to me Adam, but I've asked Martin Corley (Oxfordshire county recorder for micro-moths) to have a look as well, as there aren't many local records for this species as far as I am aware. It feeds on ferns, and has been moved around the country on cultivated plants - do you have ferns in your house by any chance?

  2. Hi Martin, a rare local micro - excellent! We have several ferns in the back garden and also in the house. In fact my wife bought a new house fern a week or two ago so that could explain it.

  3. Martin Corley has confirmed this as filicivora, and says "The only VC 23 (Oxfordshire) records I have are two from Marston, just east of the centre of Oxford." Could you send the record details to Martin please - his details are at:


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.