Gynaephora selenitica

Caterpillar of the Moon Stain Brush Spinners ( Gynaephora selenitica )

The moon stain brush spinner or Mondfleck - Bürstenbinder ( Gynaephora selenitica ) is a butterfly of the family of cutworms ( Noctuidae ).

  • 2.1 food of the caterpillar
  • 3.1 hazard


The males have an ocher yellow to light brown in color and are just like the greatly appreciates the darker forewings of females to dotted dark brown. At the lower edge of the wing usually is a thin light-gray tie. On the forewing there is also a light gray partially crescent-shaped spot. The German -speaking but also scientific name is derived from that spot. The dark brown, almost black hind wings are usually without markings. The males are 20-25 mm wingspan, partly by 10 mm smaller than the females 30-35 mm. The antennae of the males are very feathery, while that of course is only slightly kammzähnig. On the abdomen of the female is a hair brush which sweeps it over the green and rounded eggs.

The caterpillars are up to 35 mm long, and are black, with light to dark- gray hair lay. The five brushes are back in the younger stages, white with black base, later they turn yellowish - brown and gray.

The yellowish haired doll is reddish brown with dark elytra. The cocoon is gray to gray-brown and is usually in sandy soil.

♂ Two views of the same specimen.

♀ Two views of the same specimen.

Similar Species

The caterpillars of the broom stretching foot ( Calliteara fascelina ) are easily confused with the caterpillars of the Moon stain brush spinner. Copies of which one finds in the fall are usually the spot of the moon brush spinner because the caterpillars of the broom stretching foot ( Calliteara fascelina ) winter already small, while that of the moon stain brush Spinners hibernate adolescent or even an adult. Another way to distinguish between the types is the area of ​​distribution, because the broom Streckfuß is in contrast to the moon stain brush spinner, spread to southern Europe.

Way of life

The moths fly in one generation from early May to late June. While the males are diurnal, fly at night the females. The caterpillars overwinter in a hole in the ground and are from late summer to meet with a winter break until the spring of next year.

Food of the caterpillar

The caterpillars feed mainly on legume ( Fabaceae ) as ...

  • Alfalfa (Medicago )
  • Plebejus ( Coronilla )
  • Horseshoe vetch ( Hippocrepis )
  • Sainfoin ( Onobrychis )

... But also in other plants such as:

  • Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa)
  • Willow ( Salix)
  • Blueberries (Vaccinium )
  • Heather ( Calluna vulgaris)
  • Raspberry (Rubus idaeus )
  • Zimbelkraut ( Cymbalaria muralis )

Occurrence and distribution

The critically endangered species in Central Europe, Eastern Europe spread to the Urals. In South - West and North Europe, the species is only partially, or not at all before. The species prefers habitat as poor grassland and dry meadows, rare and Moore and hot bush landscapes.


The species is critically endangered, the reason is that the habitats are destroyed by afforestation, obstruction or drainage. Since the type large areas needed for survival, large areas need to be protected, so that the type is constant again frequently.

In addition, the beads, which are still quite common in autumn, the winter not survive because of parasites or diseases often.