(one synonym : Charagia coreeba Olliff, 1895)
Forest Splendid Ghost Moth
Stella Crossley & Peter Marriott
drawing by Harriet and Helena Scott, listed as Phloiopsyche eximia,
Australian Lepidoptera, Volume 2 (1864), Plate 11,
image courtesy of Biodiversity Heritage Library, digitized by Australian Museum.
The Caterpillars of this species are red and hairy, with a buff tussock on the back of each segment. The caterpillars live in tunnels up to a metre in length that they dig down into the trunk and root of their food tree. The entrance is usually within a metre of the ground. The have been found feeding in a wide variety of trees, such as :
The caterpillars pupate in their tunnel. The pupa is off-white with dark brown spots, and a dark brown head, thorax and tail.
The female moths are have green forewings, each with several brown-ringed white spots, particularly near the middle, and several dark brown dashes along the costa. The hindwings are orange with green borders. The abdomen is orange with a green tail. The moths have a wingspan of about 7 cms.
The male adult moths have blue-green wings, with a yellow diagonal streak on each forewing. The hind legs of the male moth are interesting, having brownish hairs/scales fanning out from the knees, probably to do with courting.
The species is found in wet forest in
Further reading :
Butterflies and Moths,
Collins Eyewitness Handbooks, Sydney 1992, p. 295.
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia,
Melbourne University Press, 1990, pls. 1.3, 1.5, 23.3, 23.4, p. 148.
Moths of Victoria - Part 6,
Ghost Moths - HEPIALIDAE and Allies,
Entomological Society of Victoria, 2015, pp. 14-15.
Harriet, Helena, and Alexander W. Scott,
Australian Lepidoptera and their Transformations,
Volume 2 (1869), p. 8, and also Plate 11.
(updated 12 October 2012, 16 December 2017)