Wingspan 5-7 mm.
Distributed commonly throughout mainland Britain, it is however local in Ireland.
The larvae mine the leaves of birch (Betula), creating a distinctive mine which begins as a dark circular blotch, and is then extended into a larger pale blotch with a darker central circle. Sometimes several mines are found in one leaf.
The adults are quite large for a Nepticulid, and have blackish forewings with a hint of violet, and contrasting whitish fascia and eye-caps. The males have black heads, those of the female orange or yellow.
There is a single generation, with adults at large from late May to July, and mines in evidence between August and October.