35.007 Syncopacma albipalpella (Herrich-Schäffer, 1854)

Status and Distribution

NB - Syncopacma has now been synonymised with Aproaerema.

Formerly known or suspected from several sites across England mainly in the south and east, all but one of which are thought to have been lost due to habitat change/destruction which resulted in the loss of the foodplant. Possibly now extinct as recent searches have failed to locate the species at its single remaining site in the British Isles.

Searches for larva have taken place at former sites as follows:

Ditchling Common (VC14) - last recorded in 1969. Searched on 26th May 1990 (R J Heckford, J R Langmaid) produced a few plants of Genista anglica but no larva.

Hook Common (VC12) - last recorded in 1965. Searched on 14th June 1991 (R J Heckford) produced six plants of Genista anglica but no larva.

Silchester Common (VC12) - last recorded in 1973. Searched on 26th May 1991 (B R Baker, R J Heckford*, J R Langmaid and others) produced a few plants of Genista anglica at two places but no larva. * Also searched on 14th June 1991.

In Europe it is considered a very rare species with few, if any, confirmed recent records.


National Status: 

pRDB 1

Bradley & Fletcher no: 


Provisional Map

Maps updated with all data received by February 2018.

    Foodplant and Larval Feeding Signs

    Syncopacma albipalpella feeding signs on Genista anglica (Photo: T Davis)

    Genista anglica (petty whin), see plant distribution map. In Europe also reported on Genista tinctoria (dyer's greenweed).

    Feeds between spun leaves, which it usually mines, between September and mid-June leaving them a distinctive primrose-yellow colour.

    Foodplant Map


    Syncopacma albipalpella habitat (Photo: T Davis)

    Occurs on relatively humid grass heaths.

    Finding the Moth

    Larva: makes distinctive pale yellow feeding signs on the leaves.

    Adult: unknown.

    Searches of known sites for the declining and very local larval foodplant, Petty Whin, across England and Wales would be worthwhile in late spring to look for the distinctive larval feeding signs. For more details see Parsons, M., 2015 in the Publications / Printed Papers section of this site - http://www.gelechiid.co.uk/node/336

    Similar Species

    Similar to weakly marked or worn Aproaerema anthyllidella and possibly other worn Syncopacma species. Dissection may be necessary if not bred (see note below).

    In view of the rarity of this species, it is strongly advised that no adults or larvae should be collected. If this species is suspected, advice should be sought from Butterfly Conservation.

    Larval Occurrence

    Larval Occurrence

    Flight Period

    Flight Period

    Single brooded in July.