Diversity of lepidoptera (Insecta) recorded in a forest nursery of Nordeste County on São Miguel Island (Azores)

Vieira, V., Oliveira, L., Soares, A.O., Borges, P.A.V., Borges, I. & Tavares, J. (2022) Diversity of lepidoptera (Insecta) recorded in a forest nursery of Nordeste County on São Miguel Island (Azores).

Biodiversity Data Journal, 10, e89971. DOI:10.3897/BDJ.10.e89971 (IF2022 1,3; Q3 Biodiversity Conservation)
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  • Nov, 2022



The diversity of moth species (InsectaLepidoptera) recorded in the forest nursery of Nordeste County on São Miguel Island (Azores) is given. Adults were sampled between March and December 2019 using three methods: (i) light trap to catch Noctuidae species, (ii) open-sided delta trap baited with a synthetic female sex pheromone lure to attract Epiphyas postvittana (Walker) males and (iii) entomological net to collect microlepidopteran moths. This contribution focuses mainly on the diversity of moths present in one forest nursery of Nordeste County of São Miguel Island (Azores), especially on the species associated with endemic and native plant species. It also contributes to better plan strategies for integrated protection and conservation measures, since nurseries host a great diversity of plants from the Laurel Forest, which may attract many lepidopteran species.

New information

A total of 10160 adults belonging to 33 lepidopteran species were recorded and listed by families, including: Argyresthiidae, one species (3%), Crambidae, four species (12%), Erebidae, one species (3%), Geometridae, five species (15%), Noctuidae, 18 species (55%), Sphingidae, one species (3%), Tineidae, one species (3%) and Tortricidae, two species (6%). The families NoctuidaeGeometridae and Crambidae were the most diverse. Those with the highest abundance of adults were the Noctuidae family, followed by the GeometridaeCrambidaeTortricidae and Tineidae. The number of caught adults was consistently higher during spring and summer, decreasing sharply in late autumn. For 13 species caught in the light trap, the adult sex ratio was favourable to females. An analysis of the colonisation status, feeding and primary hosts of these endemic, native or exotic moth species contributes to our understanding of the factors that may lead to their establishment in Laurel Forest environments and to what extent there is a need to monitor and control them mainly with biological control agents.