Marie's Ghost Moth
(Photo: courtesy of Paul Kay, Western Australia)
The Caterpillars of this species have been found living in tunnels bored into the stems of:
Early instars appear to feed on fungal tissue on decaying wood on the forest floor. Later instars move to a foodplant, and bore into and feed on the bark, and later feed on callus tissue under the bark that is regrown by the plant after being damaged. The tunnel can reach a length of about 20 cms. The mouth of the tunnel becomes covered in with a large aglomeration off frass.
The caterpillars pupate in their tunnels.
Before the adult moth emerges from the pupa, the pupa wriggles to be partly out of its tunnel.
The female adult moths have green forewings, each with some variable brown markings. The females have orange hind wings. The female moths have a wingspan of up to 7 cms.
The male adult moths have green forewings, each with a submarginal white line. The hindwings of the males are white, each with a green hind margin. The male moths have a wingspan of about 4 cms.
The moths are superficially similar to those of Aenetus blackburnii.
The species is found in
Further reading :
Paul Kay, Paul M. Hutchinson, & John R. Grehan,
New rearing method, life cycle, tunneling behavior and ecological notes on the splendid ghost moth Aenetus djernaesae Simonsen, 2018 from Western Australia (Lepidoptera: Hepialidae),
Journal of Insect Biodiversity,
Volume 15, Part 2 (2020), pp. 26–39.
Thomas J. Simonsen,
Splendid Ghost Moths and their Allies,
A Revision of Australian Abantiades, Oncopera, Aenetus, Archaeoaenetus and Zelotypia (Hepialidae),
Monographs on Australian Lepidoptera Volume 12,
CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne (2018), pp. 43, 141-143, 244, plates 27C-27D.
(written 17 January 2020, updated 8 March 2020)