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


male, green form
Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, from
Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art

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 ),
  • Cheese Tree ( Glochidion ferdinandi , PHYLLANTHACEAE ), and
  • Kurrajong ( Commersonia species, STERCULIAACEAE ).


    female, brown form
    Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, from
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art

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

    The species occurs in

  • Papua,

    and in Australia in

  • Northern Territory, and
  • Queensland.


    female, green form
    Papua New Guinea 1979


    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.

    Arnold Pagenstecher,
    Jahrbücher des Nassauischen Vereins für Naturkunde,
    Volume 41 (1888), p. 127, No. 328.

    Buck Richardson,
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
    LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 96.


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    (updated 9 November 2012, 29 April 2016)