Cnephasia asseclana

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"Cnephasia wahlbomiana" and "Tortrix wahlbomiana" redirect here; for other uses of these names, see below.
Flax tortrix
Cnephasia asseclana.jpg
Mounted specimen
Cnephasia asseclana01.jpg
Living adult
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Division: Ditrysia
Family: Tortricidae
Tribe: Cnephasiini
Genus: Cnephasia
Species: C. asseclana
Binomial name
Cnephasia asseclana
(Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775)

Numerous, see text

Cnephasia asseclana, the flax tortrix, is a moth of the family Tortricidae. It is found all over Europe.[1]

The wingspan is 15–18 mm. Adults are on the wing from June to August.

The caterpillars feed on a wide range of herbaceous plants and even[2] dry leaves, and can become a pest. They initially mine the leaves. Later they spin together leaves or flowers for pupation.


The flax tortrix is part of a cryptic species complex, and its taxonomy has been quite confused. For long, it was known as "C. wahlbomiana", a name that has led to many misidentifications (see below) until it was finally suppressed in favor of C. virgaureana. That, however, subsequently turned out to refer to the same species as the earlier-described C. asseclana, and thus the latter name became the senior synonym. Obsolete scientific names (junior synonyms and others) of C. asseclana are:[3]

  • Cnephasia confluens Réal, 1952
  • Cnephasia interjectana (Haworth, [1811])
  • Cnephasia latior Réal, 1953
  • Cnephasia mediocris Réal, 1953
  • Cnephasia oleraceana (Gibson, 1916)
  • Cnephasia virgaureana (Treitschke, 1835)
  • Cnephasia virgaurenana (lapsus)
  • Cnephasia wahlbomiana (Linnaeus, 1758)
  • Sciaphila virgaureana Treitschke, 1835
  • Tortrix interjectana Haworth, [1811]
  • Tortrix oleraceana Gibson, 1916
  • Tortrix wahlbomiana Linnaeus, 1758

"C. wahlbomiana" was also variously applied to C. alticolana, C. cupressivorana, C. communana, C. genitalana, and probably others[4] of the C. asseclana complex. In at least one seminal study, it was even used for Eana derivana as it seems.


  1. ^ See references in Savela (2005)
  2. ^ Grabe (1942)
  3. ^ Chambon (1978), Baixeras et al. (2009), and see references in Savela (2005)
  4. ^ E.g. C. chrysantheana, C. incertana, C. longana or C. pasiuana: Chambon (1978)


  • Baixeras, J.; Brown, J.W. & Gilligan, T.M. (2009): Online World Catalogue of the TortricidaeCnephasia asseclana. Version 1.3.1. Retrieved 2009-JAN-20.
  • Chambon, Jean-Pierre (1978): Biologie comparée et étude systématique des tordeuses nuisibles du genre Cnephasia ["Comparative biology and systematic study of pest tortrix moths of genus Cnephasia"]. Cahiers de liaison de l'OPIE 29(2): 4-7 [in French]. PDF fulltext
  • Savela, Markku (2005): Markku Savela's Lepidoptera and some other life forms – Cnephasia asseclana. Version of 2005-SEP-14. Retrieved 2010-APR-14.
  • Grabe, Albert (1942): Eigenartige Geschmacksrichtungen bei Kleinschmetterlingsraupen ["Strange tastes among micromoth caterpillars"]. Zeitschrift des Wiener Entomologen-Vereins 27: 105-109 [in German]. PDF fulltext

External links[edit]