Periscepta polysticta (Butler, 1875)
Mistletoe Moth
(one synonym : Agarista casuarinae Scott, 1864)
AGARISTINAE ,   NOCTUIDAE ,   NOCTUOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

Periscepta polysticta
(Photo: courtesy of Ian Common, from Moths of Australia)

This Caterpillar is black with cream spots, and has a cream stripe along each side. It also has a brown rump and a brown head. It is reported to feed on:

  • Bundled Guinea Flower ( Hibbertia fasciculata, DILLENIACEAE ) and
  • Hoary Guinea Flower ( Hibbertia obtusifolia, DILLENIACEAE ).

    Periscepta polysticta
    (Specimen: courtesy of the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney)

    The adult moth is black with white spots of various sizes scattered all over the forewings, and a white margin to each of the hindwings. The body is black with a yellow tuft on the end of the abdomen.

    Periscepta polysticta
    underside
    (Specimen: courtesy of the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney)

    The species occurs over much of mainland Australia, including

  • Queensland,
  • New South Wales,
  • Victoria,
  • South Australia, and
  • Western Australia.

    Periscepta polysticta
    Specimen probably damaged by a bird
    (Photo: courtesy of Ted Cadwallader)


    Further reading :

    Arthur G. Butler,
    Notes on certain Genera of Agaristidae, with Descriptions of new Species,
    The Annals and Magazine of Natural History,
    Series 4, Volume 15 (1875), p. 138, No. 1, and also Plate 13, fig 1.

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, pls. 22.29, 32.9, p. 464.


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    (updated 16 March 2012)