moremoth's picture

Crambus pascuella.

Observed: 14th July 2012 By: moremothmoremoth’s reputation in Invertebratesmoremoth’s reputation in Invertebratesmoremoth’s reputation in Invertebratesmoremoth’s reputation in Invertebratesmoremoth’s reputation in Invertebrates
Crambus pascuella.

A nicely marked grass moth in my garden light trap.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


moremoth's picture


I copied that from the new micro book - where there are a lot of "a" endings in the genus Crambus! It's also shown that way on UKMoths.

Bill Welch

RHoman's picture

Name "changes"

This is a bit of a contentious issue. The new micro book is not the only source which keeps to a set of long-standing names; Fauna Europaea, for example, also uses pratella. The history of naming lepidoptera is messy with a large number of gender disagreements, which we have lived with for a long time. It seems to be only recently that the issue has come to the fore. Perhaps names that accord with gender agreement could be added in a comment to an observation. Otherwise the process of identifing an insect or whatever, becomes very confusing indeed, especially when (as with this observation) iSpot gives a taxon name that is not in gender agreement

Robert Homan

DavidNotton's picture

Crambus is masculine

Crambus has been masculine since it was described in 1798, and the Code of Nomenclature has been around in various forms since 1905, so this shouldn't be a surprise.

I agree Crambus is inconsistent in recent UK literature using some feminine and some masculine names (lathionellus, uliginosellus).

Fauna Europaea has six Crambus species treated as masculine, and six as feminine, again inconsistent.

Google scholar shows 51:44 ratio on searches "Crambus pascuellus":"Crambus pascuella" so recent published works use both names, again inconsistent.

So yes I agree that the history of naming Lepidoptera is messy, and so we should encourage the people that write checklists and field guides to use the valid names.

Recently some websites e.g. Discover life are showing Crambus correctly masculine throughout.

I think that identifications should use the valid name where possible. That way we are all consistently aiming for the one correct name.

Perhaps until the iSpot lookup list is updated, iSpot could provide a list of names where there are known problems (happy to contribute!)

DavidNotton's picture


yes there are lots of errors out there - UK moths is inconsistent as it uses a mixture of both m/f endings in Crambus, not that I blame them for that, I expect they were following the latest checklist.