Herimosa albovenata (Waterhouse, 1940)
White Veined Skipper
(previously known as Anisynta albovenata)
TRAPEZITINAE ,   HESPERIIDAE ,   HESPERIOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans,
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

These Caterpillars are pale green with dark lines along the body, and grow to a length of about 2 cms. They have a mottled brown head and a brown tail with long white hairs. The Caterpillars feed on various species of Speargrass :

  • Rough Speargrass ( Austrostipa scabra ),
  • Fibrous Speargrass ( Austrostipa semibarbata ),
  • Delicate Speargrass ( Austrostipa falcata ), and
  • Elegant Speargrass ( Austrostipa eremophila ),

    all of POACEAE. The Caterpillars build a shelter with the entrance on top at the base of a foodplant. They rest, head upward, in their shelter by day, emerging to feed at night. They pupate in a similar shelter, head upward.

    Herimosa albovenata
    (Photo: courtesy of Robert Fisher, Butterfly Conservation South Australia Inc.)

    The upper side of the adult butterfly is dark brown with a series of pale yellow spots on each fore wing. Underneath, the wings are similar but paler, but they also show pronounced white veins, and the hind wings show a number of pale spots between the veins. The wing span is about 3 cms.

    The species is found in various small localities distributed over

  • inland New South Wales,
  • South Australia, and
  • Western Australia.

    It occurs as three subspecies:

  • albovenata,
  • fuscata Parsons, 1965, and
  • weemala Couchman, 1954.

  • Further reading :

    Michael F. Braby,
    Butterflies of Australia, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne 2000, vol. 1, pp. 174-175.

    Gustavus Athol Waterhouse,
    Australian Hesperiidae. IX. Description of a new species,
    Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales,
    Volume 65 (1940), p. 568.


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    (updated 4 August 2001, 21 September 2013)