New York Natural Heritage Program
Chain Fern Borer Moth
Papaipema stenocelis (Dyar, 1907)
Chain Fern Borer Moth Jim Wiker
Family: Owlet Moths (Noctuidae)

State Protection: Not Listed
The species is not listed or protected by New York State.

Federal Protection: Not Listed

State Rarity Rank: S1?
A State Rarity Rank of S1? means: Critically Imperiled in New York (most likely) - Conservation status is uncertain, but most likely especially vulnerable to disappearing from New York due to extreme rarity or other factors; typically 5 or fewer populations or locations in New York, very few individuals, very restricted range, very few remaining acres (or miles of stream), and/or very steep declines. More information is needed to assign a firm conservation status.

Global Rarity Rank: G4
A Global Rarity Rank of G4 means: Apparently secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.

Did you know?
Most species in the genus Papaipema seem to have declined since the 1970s, except a few. Exceptions include the Chain Fern Borer Moth, others whose larvae feed on ferns, and the Flypoison Borer Moth. This fact strongly indicates that the overabundance of deer in recent decades has contributed to the decline of most Papaipema species. This is because deer severely browse the larval foodplants of most Papaipema species, but deer generally do not severely browse ferns or the flypoison plant, which are the larval foodplants of the species not known to have declined (NatureServe 2010).

State Ranking Justification [-]
One population of the chain fern borer moth is documented. The population has not been surveyed since 1987, when one individual was captured. Potential habitat (wetlands that contain sizeable stands of Virginia chain fern, the larval foodplant) exists throughout much of New York State. However, in parts of the state, its distribution is very limited (Weldy and Werier 2010). The Chain Fern Borer Moth is known to be confined to certain areas throughout its range (D. Schweitzer, personal communication). In general, species in the genus Papaipema tend to not occupy many apparently suitable habitats, for unknown reasons. Some, many, or all habitats for the Chain Fern Borer Moth may be suitable only in certain years, depending on water levels. Also, in any given area, some habitat patches may be occupied in some seasons, and others in other seasons (NatureServe 2010). Additional surveys are needed to better understand the status and distribution of this moth in New York State.

Short-term Trends [-]

Long-term Trends [-]