Peritropha oligodrachma Diakonoff, 1954
(one synonym : Anthoecia divitiosa Walker, 1865)
Don Herbison-Evans
Stella Crossley

(Photo: courtesy of David Akers, Won Wron, Victoria)

This Caterpillar is pale brown with a yellowish dorsal line forking on the prothorax. The sides are marked by fine dark brown lines.

caterpillar in its tunnel
(Photo: courtesy of David Akers, Won Wron, Victoria)

The caterpillar lives in a shelter constructed like an open tunnel, on the underside of a leaf of its food plant. The tunnel is surrounded by trellis-like arches composed of silk and frass.

close-up of head
(Photo: courtesy of David Akers, Won Wron, Victoria)

The caterpillar feeds on the leaves of various :

  • Gum Trees ( Eucalyptus species, MYRTACEAE ).

    At night, the caterpillar emerges from the shelter, and feeds from the edge of the leaf inwards until only its base and the leaf stalk remain. The caterpillar grows to a length of about 2 cms.

    (Photo: courtesy of David Akers, Won Wron, Victoria)

    When ready to pupate, the caterpillar attaches itself to a leaf or its shelterby a cremaster. The pupa projects from the leaf, unprotected by a cocoon. The adult emerges after about two weeks.

    (Photo: courtesy of Bevan Buirchell, Bramley, Western Australia)

    The adult moth has brown forewings, each with a dark brown band in the outer area bordered by lighter areas either side flecked with silver. The hindwings are orange with a broad black margin. Raised patches of brown and orange scales on the fore wings give the wing surfaces a knobby appearance. There is also a knob on the thorax. The moth has a wingspan of about 2 cms.

    (Photo: courtesy of CSIRO/BIO Photography Group, Centre for Biodiversity Genomics, University of Guelph)

    It is found over most of Australia, including:

  • Western Australia,
  • Northern Territory,
  • Queensland,
  • New South Wales,
  • Australian Capital Territory,
  • Victoria, and
  • Tasmania.

    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia, Melbourne University Press, 1990, p. 236.

    Alexey Diakonoff,
    Revision of the Hypertrophinae (Lepidoptera, Glyphipterygidae) I,
    Proceedings of the Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie Wetenschappen,
    Volume C57, Part 3 (1954) p. 280.

    Australian Butterflies
    Australian Moths

    (updated 18 February 2010, 25 July 2023)