Ophiusa coronata (Fabricius, 1775)
(one synonym : Ophiodes ponderosa Mabille, 1879)
CALPINAE,   EREBIDAE,   NOCTUOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


(Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Mt Molloy, Queensland)

The Caterpillars of this species are pale brown loopers, with dark lines running from head to tail.


(Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Mt Molloy, Queensland)

Th head is black with a grey nose, and a white stripe each side.


head, close-up
(Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Mt Molloy, Queensland)

The caterpillars also have two black and white knobs on the tail.


showing tail knobs
(Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Mt Molloy, Queensland)

The caterpillars feed on the trees and vines in the False Almond family (COMBRETACEAE) :

  • Rangoon Creeper ( Quisqualis indica ),
  • False Almond ( Terminalia catappa ), and
  • Mueller's Damson ( Terminalia muelleri ).


    cocoon opened to show pupa
    (Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Mt Molloy, Queensland)

    The caterpillars grow to a length of about 7.5 cms. They pupate in a cocoon in the ground litter. The pupa is brown covered in a white waxy powder. The pupa has a length of about 4 cms.


    male
    Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, from
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art

    The adult moth has brown forewings each with a dark spot near the centre. The hindwings are bright yellow, each with two broad brown arcs. The moth has a wingspan of about 6 cms.


    female
    (Photo: courtesy of Graeme Cocks, Townsville, Queensland)

    This moth is an agricultural pest, causing damage to fruit by piercing the fruit with its strong proboscis in order to suck the juice. The moth is particularly prone to attack:

  • Oranges,
  • Lemons,
  • other Citrus.


    female, underside
    (Photo: courtesy of Graeme Cocks, Townsville, Queensland)

    The species occurs in countries from India to the islands of the Pacific, including

  • Hong Kong,
  • Tahiti,
  • Thailand,

    and in Australia in

  • Northern Territory, and
  • Queensland.


    Kiribati, 1980


    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, pl. 21.6, p. 454.

    Johan Christian Fabricius,
    Historiae Natvralis Favtoribvs,
    Systema Entomologiae,
    Flensburgi et Lipsiae (1775), p. 596, No. 24.

    Buck Richardson,
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
    LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 145.


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    (updated 14 August 2012, 23 April 2020)