Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915 a new species to the European fauna from Spain (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915 una nueva especie para la fauna europea de España (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

F. Graf
Burglehn, Alemania
T. Sobczyk
Diesterwegstraße, Alemania

Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915 a new species to the European fauna from Spain (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

SHILAP Revista de Lepidopterología, vol. 47, no. 188, pp. 593-596, 2019

Sociedad Hispano-Luso-Americana de Lepidopterología

Received: 20/07/2019

Accepted: 05/08/2019

Published: 30/12/2019


Abstract: Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915 is for the first time reported from Europe. During an expedition in Southern Spain, the first author captured a female of this species near Almeria. This species is described from Northern Africa, Algeria (Biskra) and Tunisia (Gafsa). Furthermore was found they on Arabian Peninsula (Oman). The foodplant is Zizyphus lotus (L.) Lam. For the first time the female genital is imaged.

Keywords: Lepidoptera, Tortricidae, Ancylis sederana, new record, Spain, Europe.

Resumen: Se menciona por primera vez Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915 para Europa. Durante una expedición al sudoeste de España, el primer autor capturó una hembra de esta especie en Almería. Se describe esta especie del norte de África, Argelia (Biskra) y Túnez (Gafsa). Además se ha encontrado en la Península Arábiga (Omán). La planta nutricia es Zizyphus lotus (L.) Lam. Se representa por primera vez la genitalia de la hembra.

Palabras clave: Lepidoptera, Tortricidae, Ancylis sederana, nueva cita, España, Europa.


In June 2018, the first author undertook a tour with his motorhome on presentation of the necessary permits for the study of Microlepidoptera fauna through southern Spain. In a light capture on the edge of the dune landscape in the vicinity of the holiday development El Toyo Almeria a Tortricidae was collected, which could not be determined for the time being. Only after the return and further research it became clear that this is a new species for Europe.

Materials and methods

The light traps were carried out with 100 W HWL 100 mixed-light lamp, a 20-W UV energy- saving lamp WEMLITE BL 368 and two super-active fluorescent tubes PHILLIPS Actinic BL 18 W. For the pictures, a Sony system camera with a Sony SEL-30M35 macro lens was used.

Results and discussion

Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915

Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915. Annls. Soc. Ent. Fr., 84(3): 308

LT: Biskra (Algeria) and Gafsa (Tunisia)

SPAIN, Almería, Cabo de Gata, sand dunes, (36º 50’ 18.53” N, 2º 17’ 35.25” W), 1 ♀ (figs 1-3), 15-VI-2018, leg. Friedmar Graf.

An inquiry at Knud Larsen (Dyssegård, Denmark) revealed belonging to Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915. The intact specimen has developed locally. The light trap site is located about 15 km east of Almeria at Retamar in the dune landscape on the AL-3115 (fig. 4). CHRÉTIEN (1915) found the caterpillars on spun leaves and on the branches of Zizyphus lotus (L.) Lam. This plant is a deciduous shrub in the buckthorn family Rhamnaceae, native to the Mediterranean region, including the Sahara in Morocco. This is a dominant perennial shrub in arid regions and stabilized sand fields in the Sahara. Zizyphus lotus has an edible fruit that can be used either dried or fresh for both human and animal nutrition. The species also occurs in the Iberian Peninsula and has a distribution focus in the province of Almeria (RIVAS & BELLOT, 1944; REY et al., 2018). The heavily endangered Lycaenidae Tarucus theophrastus (Fabricius, 1793) also lives on this plant.

1.Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915, Spain, Almería, sand dunes near Cabo del Gata, 15-VI-2018, female, living female. 2. Prepared female. 3. Female genitalia, scale 1.0 mm. 4. Habitat (all photos Friedmar Graf).
Figs 1-4.–
1.Ancylis sederana Chrétien, 1915, Spain, Almería, sand dunes near Cabo del Gata, 15-VI-2018, female, living female. 2. Prepared female. 3. Female genitalia, scale 1.0 mm. 4. Habitat (all photos Friedmar Graf).

A. sederana was found outside of North Africa also on the Arabian Peninsula (Oman, UAE) (GROENEN & AARVIK, 2007). Perhaps the species is more widespread with its food plant.

Zizyphus lotus habitats are included as Mediterranean arborescent matorral with Ziziphus, habitat 5220 (COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION, 1992), which list Europe’s most endangered and vulnerable habitats.

According to CHRÉTIEN (1915), A. sederana forms several generations a year. The overwintering caterpillars he found hidden in empty cases of a Psychidae of genus Amicta Heylaerts, 1881. He named it A. quadrangularis (Christoph, 1913). It seems likely that these were the A. mauretanica Rothschild, 1913 widespread in the desert areas of Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco.

As noteworthy other species were found at the locality: Flabellobasis capensis (Hampson, 1901) (Pyralidae), as well as Menophra annegreteae Skou, 2007 and Lhommeia biskraria (Oberthür, 1885) (Geometridae).


The authors want to thank Dr. Knud Larsen (Dyssegård, Denmark), for determination of the species and additional information. The authors are grateful to Dr. Antonio Vives (Madrid, Spain) for translating the abstract into Spanish and the Environmental Authority in Andalusia (Spain) for the permit into the Scientific Project of SHILAP.


CHRÉTIEN, P., 1915.– Contribution à la connaissance des Lépidoptères du nord de l’Afrique.– Annales de la Société entomologique de France, 84(3): 289-374.

COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION, 1992.– Council Directive 92/43/EEC of 21 May 1992 on the conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora. Available from (accessed 10-VII-2019).

GROENEN, F. & AARVIK, L., 2007.– Lepidoptera, Family Tortricidae: 447-458 pp.– In A. VAN HARTEN. Arthropod Fauna of the United Arab Emirates, 1: 754 pp. Dar Al Ummah, Abu Dhabi.

REY, P. J., CANCIO, I., MANZANEDA, A. J., GONZALEZ-ROBLES, A., VALERA, F., SALIDO, T. & ALCÁNTARA, J. M., 2018.– Regeneration of a keystone semiarid shrub over its range in Spain: Habitat degradation overrides the positive effects of plant-animal mutualisms.– Plant Biology, 20(6): 1083-1092. doi:10.1111/plb.12870.

RIVAS, S. & BELLOT, F., 1944.– Las formaciones de Ziziphus lotus(L.) Lamk. en las dunas del Cabo de Gata.– Anales del Instituto Español de Edafología, Ecología y Fisiología Vegetal, 3: 109-126.

Author notes

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