- Wingspan: 12-14 mm
- Flight period: May - Aug
- Spread: Common
- Host plants: Trifolium sp. - Medicago sp.
The Coleophora alcyonipennella is a small moth of the Coleophoridae family, with a wingspan of 12-14 mm.
Widespread throughout Europe, it is absent from Belgium and Ireland, in Italy it is absent from Sardinia. *
It is native to Europe, in the eastern Palearctic eco-zone and is present in Pakistan, the Near East and North Africa. It is a species introduced in New Zealand and Australia. ***
The front wings are fringed, of a bronze-metallic green color, near the apex the color changes fading into a metallic purple color. The hind wings are light in color also with metallic reflections. They are strongly fringed almost "feathered". The abdomen is in the background color of the front wings. The antennae are filiform, dark, and fade to white at about two thirds of the length
Bivoltine adults are in flight between May and June in the first generation and again at the end of July and August in the second **.
Adults feed on the nectar of clover flowers. It frequents rough grassy habitats, where the main host plant, the white clover (Trifolium repens), grows. The larva feeds from the inside of a protection formed by a flower of the host plant.
The larvae feed on Trifolium repens and Trifolium fragiferum, but have also been recorded on some Medicago species.
* Lepidoptera mundi https://lepidoptera.eu/ - Fauna Europea https://fauna-eu.org/
** Kimber, Ian. "37.035 BF517 Clover Case-bearer Coleophora alcyonipennella (Kollar, 1832)". UKMoths. https://ukmoths.org.uk/
*** "Coleophora alcyonipennella (Kollar, 1832)". New Zealand Organisms Register.