Stigmella sakhalinella

    Alternative names
    Small Birch Pigmy

    Wingspan 4 to 4.6 mm. The adult moths are similar to several other species in the group, and it may not be possible to identify adult to species level even by gen det.  The larvae feed on various Birch species (Betula sp.). They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a slender gallery. The corridor mostly begins close to the leaf margin, often near the tip of the leaf. The frass fills most of the width of the corridor, but always leaves a transparent zone at either side. The egg is usually on the underside of leaf.  

    Identification difficulty

    Adult Leafmine  

    Recording advice

    Adult: It may not be possible to identify adults to species level, even by gen det.

    Leafmine: Unless identified by a recognised expert, a photo is required.  Please include a photograph showing the mine backlit to show the frass pattern.  Please also state the host plant and, if possible, the egg position on the leaf.  This is a rarely recorded moth in our area and care is needed when recording this species.


    Where Birch, the larval host species, is present.

    When to see it

    Adults are on wing in May and again from July to August.

    Life History

    Pupation takes place outside of the mine.

    UK Status

    In the Butterfly Conservation's Microlepidoptera Report 2011 this species was classified as local.

    VC55 Status

    Rare, or rarely recorded, in Leicestershire and Rutland. The Leicester, Gilroes Cemetery record of 8th November 2019 was the first for Leicestershire and Rutland.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map