(one synonym : Boarmia semitata Walker, 1860)
White-patch Bark Moth
BOARMIINI, ENNOMINAE, GEOMETRIDAE, GEOMETROIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Merlin Crossley, Melbourne, Victoria)
The background colour of this Caterpillar is beige with a pink tinge. Dark brown dots give the surface a mottled appearance. The spiracles are yellow, each surrounded by a black ring. The second abdominal segment bears a pair of short blunt horns. Each horn has a small red retraclable knob in its centre. The sides of the head are raised dorsally to form two rounded knobs which point forwards. Individual Caterpillars vary in their overall darkness. They have a typical resting posture of standing stick-like on a stem.
Our Caterpillars chose to feed on:
but they have been reported as also feeding on:
The caterpillars feed for two to three months, and grow to a length of about 5 cms. The caterpillar pupates in a soil cell' The pupa is initially green with a brown abdomen. Later it becomes wholly brown. The adult moth emerged after about two months.
The adult moth is is patchy, and varies from pale brown to dark grey, with wavy transverse dark lines extending across both wings. The margins of each fore and hind wing have wavy edges with a black bordering line. There is a pale patch near the middle of the margin of each forewing.
The undersurface of the wings is fawn, with a broken dark brown terminal border, and a dark brown spot near the middle of each wing. The moth has a wingspan of about 4 cms.
Our specimens were reared from eggs laid in April. The eggs are laid side by side and overlapping in a crevice of bark. Eggs laid by different females differed in colour. They are oval, and have a microscopic pattern of crenulated ribs. When newly laid they are cream, yellow, or green. As the eggs aged, they turned orange, brown, or red. The eggs hatched about twelve hours after they were sprinkled with water.
The underside of the wings of the female is pale brown, and of the male is yellowish, both with two broad squarish black marks on the margin, and a round black spot near the middle of each wing.
The species is found in
Further reading :
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia,
Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 36.1, p. 367.
in Boisduval & Guenée: Uranides et Phalénites,
Histoire naturelle des insectes; spécies général des lépidoptères,
Volume 9 (1857), p. 250, No. 381.
Moths of Victoria: Part 7,
Bark Moths and Allies - GEOMETROIDEA (D),
Entomological Society of Victoria, 2016, pp. 28-29.
(updated 19 March 2012, 16 September 2013, 4 April 2015, 4 November 2017)