Aenetus tegulatus (Pagenstecher, 1888)
(one synonym : Hepialus cyanochlora Lower, 1894)
HEPIALIDAE ,   HEPIALOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
( donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


male
(Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, Kuranda, Queensland)

The young caterpillars of this species feed on dead leaves. Older caterpillars bore into the trunks of various species of live young trees, including

  • Black She-oak ( Allocasuarina littoralis, CASUARINACEAE ),
  • Kurrajong ( Commersonia species, STERCULIAACEAE ), and
  • Cheese Tree ( Glochidonia disparides, EUPHORBIACEAE ).


    female, brown form
    (Photo: courtesy of Cris Lane, Bellenden Ker, Queensland)

    The adult moths have mottled brown or bright green forewings, and pink hindwings. The female has a wingspan of about 4 cms. The male adult moth differs from the female in being smaller and paler. Both sexes have long abdomens, that project beyond the wings in their natural resting posture. The adults are nocturnal fliers, and are attracted to lights.


    female, green form
    Papua New Guinea 1979

    The species occurs in

  • Papua,

    and in Australia in

  • Northern Territory, and
  • Queensland.


    Further reading :

    David Lane,
    A Splendid Ghost Moth from Iron Range, North Queensland,
    Metamorphosis Australia Issue 52 (March 2009), pp. 5-7,
    Butterflies and Other Invertebrates Club.


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    (updated 9 November 2012, 1 January 2014)