Cleorodes lichenaria (Hufnagel, 1767)

Cleorodes lichenaria: Adult (e.l. Valais, Switzerland) [S] Cleorodes lichenaria: Adult (e.l. Valais, Switzerland) [S] Cleorodes lichenaria: Larva (colour obviously adjusted to the local lichen flora, Valais, 2009) [M] Cleorodes lichenaria: Larva [M] Cleorodes lichenaria: Cocoon [S] Cleorodes lichenaria: Pupa [S] Cleorodes lichenaria: Habitat in the Swiss Rhone Valley (Valais) in 2009 [N]

Host plants:
The caterpillars feed on lichens that grow on woody plants.

Cleorodes lichenaria inhabits grove rich places or bright, sunny forests with many bushes and trees that are overgrown with lichens. I found the caterpillar in the Valais near Leuk on old, lichen-rich and partially dead bushes of Prunus mahaleb in a dry riparian area of the Rhone which was partially already heavily affected by recreational use.

Life cycle:
The caterpillar overwinters. I found fully-grown larvae in the Rhone Valley in Valais in late May 2009. The moths fly especially from June to mid-August. A partial second generation seems to occur in late summer and early autumn only rarely and scantily.

Endangerment: threatened with extinction

Endangerment factors:
Cleorodes lichenaria is threatened with extinction in many areas as the old, lichen-rich trees decrease (air pollution, but still more habitat loss through dense forests, excessive removal of woods on dry slopes, destruction of old stands of fruit trees and hedges, etc.).

Cleorodes lichenaria is distributed from Spain across Southern and Central Europe to the Caucasus.