Cucullia lactucae (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775)

Cucullia lactucae: Adult (e.l. Vorarlberg, Kanisfluh, 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Adult (e.l. Vorarlberg, Kanisfluh, W-Austria, 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Adult (e.l. Vorarlberg, Kanisfluh, 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Adult (e.l. Vorarlberg, Kanisfluh, 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Young larva (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, Gerstetten, late June 2011) [N] Cucullia lactucae: Half-grown larva (Olympus, Greece, July 2009) [N] Cucullia lactucae: Larva at Lactuca serriola (eastern Swabian Alb, Southern Germany, June 2012) [N] Cucullia lactucae: Larva (Olympus, July 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Larva (Bregenzer Wald, Kanisfluh, August 2009) [M] Cucullia lactucae: Larva (Bregenzer Wald 2009) [S] Cucullia lactucae: Larva (Memmingen, Southern Germany) [M] Cucullia lactucae: Larva (head), Bregenzer Wald, August 2009 [S] Cucullia lactucae: Pupa [S] Cucullia lactucae: Larval habitat on the eastern Swabian Alb (29/06/2012). Here I observed a quite large larva on a single Lactuca serriola. [N]

Host plants:
The larvae feed on Asteraceae, especially Prenanthis purpurea, more rarely also on Mycelis muralis, Lactuca and Sonchus species.

The larval habitat mostlky form forest edges, herb communities in the woodlands or clearcuts. Usually Cucullia lactucae occurs in mountainous, semi-shaded locations. But I observed a larva also on a hot woodland edge to a limestone quarry (eastern Swabian Alb).

Life cycle:
The pupa hibernates. The moths fly from May through August with a focus from mid-June to mid-July. Most caterpillars are found in July and August. They sit open on the plants.

Endangerment: regionally endangered or decreasing

Endangerment factors:
Cucullia lactucae is in decline due to dark forest management with afforestation of all remaining open areas and increasingly rapid overgrowth with nitrophyts (eutrophication of nitrogen and carbon dioxide).

The distribution extends from the Pyrenees through the temperate zone of Europe and Asia to Mongolia.

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