(one synonym: Lithosia fraterna Butler, 1877)
LITHOSIINAE, ARCTIIDAE, NOCTUOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Merlin Crossley, Melbourne, Victoria)
This Caterpillar has long fine black and white hairs, which appear to be non-irritant. Its body is mottled in black, yellow, and grey. Its head and legs are red. Our specimen was found on a window sill inside the house. It was raised on
growing on damp pieces of bark from an old apple tree. The caterpillar grew to a length of 3 cms.
It pupated inside a cocoon which it spun amongst the twigs.
The photograph shows the stiff posture characteristic of many LITHOSIINAE, or "Footmen", which are a sub-family of the ARCTIIDAE. The adults have a wingspan up to 3 cms. The forewings are grey-brown with a red or yellow edged cream line along the costa, and a small transparent window (aereole) on each wing. The hind wings are orange. The absence of a yellow spot in the centre of the thorax, and the double line along the costa, distinguish it from the similar moth Brunia replana.
The species is found over south-eastern Australia including:
Further reading :
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia,
Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 44.3, p. 437.
Pat and Mike Coupar,
New South Wales University Press, Sydney 1992, p. 33.
Moths of Victoria - Part 2,
Tiger Moths and Allies - NOCTUOIDEA (A),
Entomological Society of Victoria, 2009, pp. 20-21, 26-27.
Catalogue of Lepidoptera Heterocera,
List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
Part 2 (1854), pp. 506-507.
(updated 25 May 2010, 13 May 2018)