This new species of Lepidoptera is closely related to Ypsolopha instabilella (Mann, 1866), but with some differences externally, in male and female genitalia and a significant difference in DNA barcode.
With the present work, the number of Portuguese Ypsolopha species is raised to seven. Currently, the distribution known of this species is limited to a single site at Vila Nova de Milfontes, Beja, Portugal, in contrast with Y. instabilella which has a wide distribution from southern Spain, into central Asia.
This new species may already be threatened by the disappearance of its host plant (Ephedra fragilis Desf), which has suffered a major reduction in population in recent years and is classified as "Vulnerable" in the Red List of Vascular Plants of Mainland Portugal. Further research is needed to understand its conservation status.
Ephedra fragilis Desf
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