(formerly known as Xylomyges sunia)
CUCULLIINAE, NOCTUIDAE, NOCTUOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Alan Fletcher Rearch Station, Brisbane, Queensland)
This caterpillar is brown with orange bands and a lot of long narrow dark stripes. It has reduced prolegs, and walks in a looper fashion.
The caterpillar pupates in a cocoon attached to a foodplant stem.
The adult moth has brown forewings, with a complex light and dark pattern of lines. The hindwings are white shading darker toward the margins. The wingspan is about 3 cms.
This species was introduced deliberately into Australia from the USA to control the weed :
The species occurs naturally in
as well as later in 1957 and 1962 into Australia, and is now found for example in
Further reading :
Achille Guenée, in Boisduval & Guenée,
Histoire naturelle des insectes; spécies général des lépidoptères,
Volume 9, Part 5 (1852), p. 149, No. 238.
Peter Marriott & Marilyn Hewish,
Moths of Victoria - Part 9,
Cutworms and Allies - NOCTUOIDEA (C),
Entomological Society of Victoria, 2020, p. 5.
Ebbe S. Nielsen, Edward D. Edwards, & T.V. Rangsi (eds),
Checklist of Australian Lepidoptera,
CSIRO Publishing, 1996, pp. 328, 338, 379.
(updated 15 August 2012, 2 April 2017, 9 December 2020)