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THE object of this pamphlet is to make known
several new species of Pterophoridse occurring in
California and Oregon, some of which may probably
have also a wider distribution. The types are at
present in my own collection, where they will always
be at the service of any entomologists who may be
engaged in the study of this group of insects on this
side of the Atlantic ; and I have given duplicates of
nearly all the species here described to a friend in
America, by whose known courtesy I feel sure that
they will there be made available, in the interests of
science, to all who may wish to see them.




IN the course of a sporting-expedition through
California and Oregon, extending from the middle of
May 1871 to the end of June 1872, I devoted much
time to collecting Lepidoptera.

With the exception of about four months spent in
winter-quarters, in a log hut on the site of old Camp
Watson, about sixty miles from Canyon City, all my
time was passed in open camp, which gave me excep-
tional opportunities of collecting at all hours ; and as
my outfit was purposely adapted to the requirements
of a vagrant entomologist, as well as to those of a
sportsman, I was able, with the help of my energetic


assistant Thomas Eedle, to capture and set a great
number of specimens nearly every day, and to bring
them to Europe in the best possible condition.

One large tin case, divided into about seventy
partitions, was exclusively devoted to the rearing of
Microlepidoptera from their earlier stages, in as many
wide-mouthed glass bottles, which were corked or
covered with wire gauze, according to the circum-
stances of each particular case; but, although this
enabled me to ascertain the food-plants of many
interesting species, I unfortunately omitted to make
any sufficient descriptions or to preserve specimens of
the larvae.

The numerous species of Pterophoridae forming so
great a proportion in the rich results of this expedi-
tion prove that that group is strongly represented in
the Western States, and that the close resemblance to
European forms, which has so often been mentioned
by different writers as one of the characteristics of the
Lepidopterous Fauna of Western North America, is
here fully maintained.


The manner in which my journey was performed
has brought into some prominence the very interesting
but perplexing question of the value of apparently
specific differences. In consequence of my changing
the collecting-ground every two or three days, with
a few exceptions, throughout the season, by short
marches of from fifteen to thirty miles a day (moving
northwards in the summer of 1871 and southwards in
the spring of 1872), I was enabled to acquire a consi-
derable series of specimens of several species, ranging
perhaps, in some instances, over 100 or 150 miles of
country, exhibiting almost imperceptibly gradual but
extensive variation both in size and colour. In one or
two notable instances the range of this variation would
seem to include two or even three different forms,
which, if they had been found without their niter-
mediate connecting-links, would certainly have been
considered distinct species ; and even after a careful
comparison of an extended series, it must still remain,
in some cases, an open question whether they are or
are not entitled to specific rank.

In the genera Amblyptilns, Hiibner, (Edemato-


phorus, Wallengren, and even in Lioptilus, Hiibner,
this difficulty especially presents itself.

The Californian and Oregonian specimens of Am-
blyptilus certainly include examples which correspond
precisely with European specimens of A. acantho-
dactylus and A. cosmodactylus respectively ; and Prof.
Zeller informs me that he has bred these two forms
in Europe from larvae feeding on the same plants
of Aquilegia and Geranium pratense, but that he
omitted to take the necessary pains to make out their
characters in the larval stage.

My specimens of the genus (Edematophorus^ vary-
ing in size and colour between the two extreme
forms represented by those hereinafter described as
CE. grisescens and (E. guttatus, include several varieties
showing a gradual approximation in opposite direc-
tions to the intermediate species known as (E. creti-
dactylus, Fitch; and some of these can scarcely be
distinguished from the European (E. lithodactylus,
Treitschke; yet if this last species is not to be
confounded with cretidactylus (and it has certainly


some distinguishing characters, which have been care-
fully pointed out by Prof. Zeller, Verh. z.-b. Ges.
Wien, xxiv. p. 444), the two previously mentioned
must be even more clearly entitled to claim specific

Under the name of (Edematophorus occidentals I
have ventured to include the two very different
varieties figured in Plate II. figs. 13, 14, partly on
the evidence afforded by a series of eight specimens
obtained on Mt. Shasta in August, which do not
vary among themselves, but appear to be exactly
equidistant between them, and partly because I have
other specimens from neighbouring localities which
are again intermediate in both directions between
the Shasta specimens and the two which have been
selected for illustration.

Again, in the genus Lioptilus, the two varieties
of L. homodactylus, Walker, would have been suffi-
ciently distinguished from each other by the difference
in the colour of their heads ; but an intermediate
shade of colour is observable in the heads of some


specimens, which are also apparently intermediate
between them in other particulars.

The time will come when a careful and minute
study of these insects in their different stages of
development will throw more light upon the subject,
and will probably lead to some useful revision of
their synonymy ; but it is difficult to foresee whether
such a revision will tend to increase or to diminish
the number of determined species in such genera as
those above referred to.

Very few species of Pterophoridse have up to the
present time been recorded from North-west America.
Three were described by Mr. Packard in 1873, in the
'Annals of the Lyceum of Natural History, New
York,' vol. x. p. 266 &c., from California.

Of these the first, Pterophorus perymcilidactylus,
is the well-known Pterophorus monodactylus of
Linne, as pointed out by Prof. Zeller (Verb. z.-b.
Ges. Wien, xxv. p. 266).

The second, Pterophorus sulphureodactyhis, belongs


to the genus Lioptilus, Wallengren, and is re-
described and figured in this pamphlet.

The third, Pterophorus cervinidactylus, to judge
from Mr. Packard's description, may probably be
found to be identical with the somewhat variable
and widely distributed Platyptilus bertrami, a Texan
variety of which has been described by Prof. Zeller
(Stett. ent. Zeit. 1867, p. 333) under the name of
P. bischoffii.

Mr. Walker (Cat. Lep. Het. xxx. p. 940) described
Pterophorus homodactylus from Vancouver's Island ;
and Prof. Zeller (Verh. z.-b. Ges. Wien, xxiv. pp. 444,
445) records (Edematophorus cretidactylus, Fitch,
and describes Lioptihis mattlmvianus, both also
from Vancouver's Island.

With these exceptions I am not aware of any
Pterophoridse having been alluded to by entomo-
logical authors as occurring in North-west America.

In this pamphlet I have described several new
species, giving figures of each ; and have given


figures also of such known species as were met with
in the course of my expedition.

Three species are figured here which do not, so far
as I am aware, occur in California or Oregon. Of
these, two Lioptilus paleaceus, Zell., and Oxyptilus
periscelidactylus, Fitch are given for convenience of
comparison with some of their near allies ; the other,
Platyptilus petrodactylus, Walk., to enable those who
have not access to Mr. Walker's types to become
acquainted, through this pamphlet, with all the
three North-American Pterophoridse which he has

The arrangement followed here is that of Herr
Pastor Wallengren, as explained in his ' Skandi-
naviens Fjadermott,' published in 1859 (K. Vetensk.-
Akad. Handlingar, B. iii.), of which Prof. Zeller has
given an abs tract in the ' Stettiner ent. Zeitung ' for
1867, and of which the Latin diagnoses have been
translated by Dr. R. C. E. Jordan in a very useful
paper in the ' Entomologist's Monthly Magazine,'
nos. 65, 66, 67, for the months of October, November,
and December of the year 1869.


The genera Platyptilus, Amblyptilus, and Aciptihts,
first characterized by Hiibner (Verz. pp. 429, 430),
were originally spelt Platyptilia, Amblyptilia, and
Aciptilia. I have followed Wallengren in adopting
the termination suggested by Zeller (Isis, 1841,
pp. 768-770), and in quoting Hiibner as the
authority for the sense in which they are used.

Dr. Jordan and Mr. Stainton both agree in re-
ferring the genus Chrysocorys, Hiibn., to the Ptero-
phoridre rather than to the Tineidse, and I have
followed those authors in including it here.

I cannot hope that this contribution to the history
of the North-American Pterophoridse will be even
nearly as useful as at one time I hoped and in-
tended it to be ; for instead of continuing to acquire
specimens of this group of insects, and to study them
whilst the recollection of those which I had seen in
American collections was fresh in my mind, owing
to a variety of other occupations withdrawing my
attention from the subject, I laid aside in 1873 (about
a year after my return to England) all the material,


with the steel plates which had been prepared by the
late Mr. E. W. Robinson to illustrate it, and have
found myself at great disadvantage in taking it up
again after such a lapse of time. The plates them-
selves had become rusted, and could only be utilized
by printing first on stone, instead of working direct
from the steel ; this has impaired the clearness of
the delicate outlines in some cases, but I trust that
in the colouring this will be found to have been

Whilst rendering my grateful acknowledgment
to Prof. P.- C. Zeller for his kind and courteous
replies to numerous queries which I have addressed
to him, and for the great assistance I have
derived from them, I must crave indulgence for
many and serious shortcomings in this humble
attempt to add to the knowledge of a somewhat
difficult group of insects.


April 26th, 1880.




festaliella, Huln., PL I. fig. 1, p. 1.
felicella, Wlsm., PL L figs. 2, 2a, 2b, p. 2.


bertrami, Rossi, PL I. fig. 3, p. 3.
adustus, Wlsm., PI. I. fig. 4, p. 5.
grandis, TFkm., PL I. fig. 5, p. 6.
cardui, Zell., PL I. fig. 6, p. 7.
percnodactylus, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 7, p. 8.
albidus, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 8, p. 10.
orthocarpi, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 9, p. 11.
albidorsellus, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 10, p. 13.
shastse, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 11, p. 14.
fragilis, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 12, p. 16.
albiciliatus, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 13, p. 17.
modestus, Wlsm., PL I. fig. 14, p. 18.
petrodactylus, Walk., PL II. fig. 15, p. 20.


pica, Wlsm., PL II. fig. 1, p. 21.
cosmodactylus, Hiibn., PL II. figs. 2-4, p. 23.


periscelidactylus, Fitch, PL II. fig. 5, p. 25.
ningoris, Wlsm., PL II. fig. 6, p. 26.
delawaricus, Zell., PL II. fig. 7, p. 29.
nigrocUiatus. Z<?ft., PL II. fig. 8, p. 31.



exclamationis, Wlsm., PL II. fig. 10, p. 32.


grisescens, Wlsm., PL II. fig. 11, p. 34.
cretidactylus, Fitch, p. 35.
guttatus, Wlsm., PI. II. fig. 12, p. 36.
occidentalis, Wlsm., PI. II. figs. 13, 14, p. 37.

PTEROPHORUS, Wallengren.

monodactylus, Linn., PI. II. fig. 16, PL III. fig. 1, p. 39.

LIOPTILITS, Wallengren.

paleaceus, Zell., PL III. fig. 2, p. 41.
stramineus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 3, p. 41.
angustus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 4, p. 43.
inconditus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 5, p. 44.
agraphodactylus, Walk., PL III. fig. 6, p. 46.
sulphureus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 7, p. 48.
homodactylus, Walk., PL III. figs. 8, 9, p. 50.
subochraceus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 10, p. 53.
helianthi, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 11, p. 54.
parvus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 12, p. 55.


cinerascens, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 13, p. 57.
montamis, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 14, p. 59.
californicus, Wlsm., PL II. fig. 9, p. 60.


pygmaeus, Wlsm., PL III. fig. 15, p. 64.

ALUCITA, Zeller.

hexadactyla, Linn., PL III. fig. 16, p. 66.




Chrysocorys festaliella,

(PLATE I. FIG. 1.)
Schreckensteinia festaliella, Hiibn., Wocke, Cat. 2705.

Of this species six specimens occurred on the 29th
May, 1871, in Mendocino County, California, and
three more early in June of the following year on
the coast near Klamath River. They appear to be
in all respects the same as European specimens,
having also the same habit of frequenting one or
more species of the genus Eubus.

The only Chrysocorys at present described as
occurring in North America, C. erythriella, Clemens
(Proc. Ac. Nat. Sc. Phil. 1860, p. 168), is very closely
allied to this species.

I have examined Dr. Clernens's type in the collec-
tion of the Entomological Society of Philadelphia, as
well as two specimens in Mr. Stain ton's collection.

The differences which exist between them are ivell



expressed in a letter which I received from Mr.
Stainton, who kindly examined my Californian speci-
mens in June 1873 :

" My impression is that your Chrysocorys are
festaliella. C. erythriella is smaller and darker, and
the dark streak near the inner margin seems to stop
at the anal angle, instead of turning up along the
hind margin to terminate at the apex, as in our

Chrysocorys felicella, sp. nov.

(PLATE I. FIGS. 2, 2 a, 26.)

Capite, palpis thorace et abdomine nitide griseo-fuscis.
Antennis setaceis.

Alis anticis sericeis, subpurpurascenti-fuscis, ciliis uni-
coloribus ; posticis cum ciliis brunneo-fuscis.

Tibiis et calcaribus subnitidis.

Head, face, thorax, and abdomen smooth, with closely
appressed, shining, greyish-fuscous scales ; the
palpi drooping, scarcely recurved, the second
joint with a few projecting scales in front, the
third joint smooth and of equal length with the
second ; the tongue distinctly yellowish.

The underside of the thorax and abdomen shining,
almost metallic, whitish grey.

Fore wings unicolorous, smooth, rather shining, fus-
cous, with a very slight purplish tinge ; the cilia
the same.


Hind wings and cilia rather pale brownish fuscous.
The legs rather shining brownish grey ; the third

pair armed, as in C. festaliella, with moderately

long spurs of the same colour.

Expanse 9 millims.

The small, green, and slightly hairy larvae were
found feeding (April 16th), in Northern Oregon, on
a species of Orthocarpus, and again, on another
species of the same plant, at the end of June, near
Eureka, in Humboldt County, California. Three
specimens bred from the former emerged at the
beginning of May, and one specimen from the latter
on the 10th of July.

The larva appeared to draw together the slender
leaves at the terminal shoots of the food-plant, and
constructed a white open network cocoon, in which
the pupa was distinctly visible.

Platyptilus bertrami, Rossi

(PLATE I. FIG. 3.)

Platyptilia bertrami, Rossi., Wocke, Cat. 3122.
Platyptilus bischoffii, Zell. Stet. ent. Zeit, 1867, p. 333.
Platyptilia bischoffii, Zell. Verb. z.-b. Ges. Wien, xxiii. p. 317.
? Pterophorus cervinidactylus, Packard, Ann. Lye. Nat, Hist. New
York, vol. x. pp. 266, 267 (1873).

I have carefully compared a series of Californian

specimens with an equal number of English examples

B 2


of P. bertrami, and am unable to detect any re-
cognizable difference. The Californian form does
not possess the unicolorous white hind feet which,
according to Prof. Zeller, distinguish his Texan
Platyptilus bischoffii from the European species.

The only other species to which it might perhaps
be referred is Pterophorus cervinidactylus, Packard
(Ann. Lye. Nat. Hist. N. Y. x. 266) ; but that species
is described as having the " fringe " (of the fore wings)
" concolorous with the wing," which is stated to be
" fawn-brown." If this may be read as intended to
refer to the pale ground-colour of the wing (the
" paler subochreous along the inner edge "), the
description exactly applies to my specimens and to
the European species. The only other point in which
it scarcely agrees with P. bertrami is in the " black
dot just above and near the end of the split."
American and English specimens of P. bertrami
have a few dark scales near the end of the fissure,
some above and some below it ; but they scarcely
amount to what may be called a black dot.

I am nevertheless inclined to think that this will
be found to be the species described by Mr. Packard.

Since writing the above, I have heard from Prof.
Zeller that he is now inclined to regard bertrami,
ochrodactylus, and bischoffii as all belonging to the
same species.

Taken not uncommonly in Mendocino and Lake


Counties, California, June 1st to 18th, 1871, and on
the Siskiyou Mountains, June 8th, 1872.

Some varieties, also from California and Oregon,
are decidedly paler than the figure, indeed so much
so as to suggest the idea that they may possibly be
distinct ; but I have an equally pale specimen bred
from a larva found in England.

Platyptilus adustus, sp. nov.

(PLATE I. FIG. 4.)

Capite, palpis et alls anticis aduste cervinis, parum
partim sublituratis^ costa vix infuscata, lineola ad
bases ciliorum marginis apicalis brunnea.

Alis posticis bnmneis, digito tertio paulo pallidiore.

Head, face, palpi, and antennae, together with the
projecting frontal tuft, fawn-colour, with a
browned or burnt appearance.

The anterior wings the same, but with very faint
indications of paler blotches about the dorsal
margin and above the fissure. The costa is of
a slightly darker shade, and a slender brownish
line runs along the base of the cilia on the
apical margin ; the cilia are scarcely paler than
the fore wings.

Hind wings with the two anterior lobes more brown-
ish ; the posterior lobe of the same colour as the
fore wings.

Legs pale fawn-colour ; the feet and anterior portions
of the tibiae scarcely paler.

Expanse 23 millims.


Siskiyou Mountains, California, June 1872.

- Distinguished from P. bertrami by its brown head
and frontal tuft, and by the darker cilia of the
apical margin, as well as by its more uniformly
brownish colour.

Platyptilus grandis, sp. nov.

(PLATE I. FIG. '5.)

Capite, palpis etflocco front ali brevi dilute cervinis.

Alls anticis costa, punctis duobus elongatis ante
medium et macula triangulari costali ante fissu-
ram brunneo-fuscis, regione apicali adumbrata,
lineola subapicali et ciliis palUdioribus, ciliis
in sinu marginis dorsalis et ad angulum analem
brunneo-fuscis ; posticis dilute brunneo-cervinis.

Head, palpi, and frontal tuft pale fawn-colour, the
latter shorter than in the smaller allied species,
P. bertrami and P. adustus ; antennae fawn-
brown, faintly spotted on their upperside.

Anterior wings pale fawn-colour ; the costa tinged
with brownish fuscous as far as the triangular
costal blotch before the fissure, which is of the
same colour; two brownish-fuscous elongated
dots are situated before the middle of the wing,
the lower one of these being nearest to the base.
Beyond the costal triangle, after a pale intervening
space, the lobes above and below the fissure are
shaded with fawn-brown to the apical margin.


but crossed by a slender pale waved line running
parallel to it. A brownish line runs along the
base of the cilia, terminating in a brownish-
fuscous shade at the anal angle. The cilia on
the dorsal margin are brownish fuscous except
immediately before the anal angle, where they
are very pale fawn-colour.

Hind wings fawn-brown, with paler cilia, except those

on the dorsal margin of the third lobe, which

are tinged with brownish fuscous.
Legs and spurs very pale fawn-colour. The hinder

extremities of the third pair of tibiae slightly

Expanse 36 millims.

I took three specimens of this large and distinct
species on M'Leod Creek, near Mount Shasta, Cali-
fornia, at the latter end of August 1871.

Platyptilus cardui.

(PLATE I. FIG. 6.)

Pterophorus carduidactylus, Riley, Rep. Ins. Miss. i. 1869, pp. 180,

181, pi. 2. figs. 13, 14.
Platyptilia cardui, Zell. Stet. ent. Zeit. xxxii. p. 179 ; Yerh. z.-b.

Ges. Wien, 1873, xxiii. p. 318.

I have adopted Zeller's name for this species in
preference to the mixed name originally given to it
by Professor Biley. It occurred in Northern Cali-
fornia in Junel872, flying among mixed growth at
springs on a hill-side. The specimens are perhaps


somewhat paler than those which I have seen
from the Eastern States, and seem to be almost
undistinguishable from the European P. zetterstedtii,
Zeller (Isis, 1841, p. 777). Prof. Zeller (Verh.
z.-b. Ges. Wien, 1873, pp. 119, 120) carefully com-
pares the two species. He relies, amongst other
points, upon the extent of the brown colour upon
the hind legs between the two pairs of spurs, as
pointing to a sure specific difference ("An der
Hinterschienenspitze nimmt bei diesem Texaner Ex-
emplar die braune Farbe weniger als den halben
Kaum zwischen den zwei Sporenpaaren ein, bei
cardui f ").

I observe that in my Californian examples the
brown colour occupies fully one half of the space
between the two pairs of spurs. The habits of the
two species in their larval stages are undoubtedly
very distinct, the European zetterstedtii feeding singly
in stems of Senecio nemorensis, the American cardui
being gregarious on heads of thistles (Cirsium Ian-

Platyptilus percnodactylus, sp. nov.

(PLATE I. FlG. 7.)

Copite, palpis et alls anticis dilute brunneis, lituris
apud fasuram et marginem dorsalem, et lineola
subapicali pallidioribus, macula triangulari cos-


tali, maryine apicali et ciliis brunneis ; post ids
brunneis, ciliis digiti tertii squamis fusco-brun-
neis apud medium marginis dorsalis ornatis.

Head and palpi pale brown; the antennae spotted
above with brown and whitish.

Fore wings pale brown, with very pale fawn-coloured
diffused blotches, one above the base of the
fissure reaching to the costa, another below the
costal triangle, and another at the base of the
dorsal margin; a pale line runs parallel to the
apical margin; beyond this line the apical
margin is shaded with brown, a pale line running
along the base of the cilia, which are brown,
except within the fissure and before the anal
angle; a small dot of brownish-fuscous scales
lies beyond the middle of the dorsal margin at
the commencement of the dorsal cilia.

Hind wings brown, the third lobe slightly paler
towards the base and ornamented with a spot of
brownish-fuscous scales in the cilia on its dorsal

Legs slender, whitish fawn, slightly thickened and
touched with brown at all the joints ; the spurs

Abdomen brownish, paler at the base.

Expanse 22 millims.

Hatchet Creek, Shasta County, California, July
14th, 1871.

This species is allied to P. zetterstedtii and P.
cardui\ but" the fore wings are shorter, the apex less


produced, the legs more slender, the whole insect
having a less robust appearance.

It approaches more nearly to P. gonodactylus,

Platyptilus albidus, sp. nov.

(PLATE I. FIG. 8.)

Capite et thorace cinereo-albidis.

Alls anticis cinereo-albidis, macula triangulari costali
brunnea, costa et margine apicali brunneo suffu-
sis, ciliis albidis ; posticis cum ciliis unicoloribus
dilute brunneis.

Tibiis posticis cinereis, pedibus et calcaribus paulo

Head, palpi, and thorax bluish white; antennae
dotted above.

Fore wings bluish white, dusted with brownish scales,

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