Pasiphilodes testulata (Guenée, 1857)
Pome Looper
(formerly known as Chloroclystis testulata)
Don Herbison-Evans
Stella Crossley

Pasiphilodes testulata
young instars
(Photo: courtesy of Steve Williams, Moths of Victoria: Part 3)

These caterpillars have been found feeding on

  • the young fruit of Apples ( ROSACEAE ), and
  • the flowers of Wattles ( MIMOSACEAE ).

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    later instar
    (Photo: courtesy of Steve Williams, Moths of Victoria: Part 3)

    On Wattle: the caterpillars initially are yellowish brown, which provides them with great camouflage amongst the Wattle flowers.

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    later instar
    (Photo: courtesy of Steve Williams, Moths of Victoria: Part 3)

    Later caterpillars develop a pale edged dark line along the back.

    Chloroclystis testulata
    dark form
    (Photo: courtesy of Joan Fearn, Moruya, New South Wales)

    The adult moth is a variable grey or brown, sometimes with a broad pale band across each wing.

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    pale band form
    (Photo: courtesy of Donald Hobern, Aranda, Australian Capital Territory)

    The wingspan is about 2 cms.

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    chestnut-coloured form
    (Photo: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria: Part 3)

    The eggs are oval, pale brown, and laid separately.

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    eggs magnified
    (Photo: courtesy of Steve Williams, Moths of Victoria: Part 3)

    The species has been found in :

  • New Zealand,

    as well as in Australia in

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

    Pasiphilodes testulata
    (Photo: copyright of Brett and Marie Smith, Ellura Sanctuary, South Australia)

    A number of subspecies have been proposed for the various forms of the adult moth, including albiplaga (L.B. Prout, 1958) and irregulata (L.B. Prout, 1958).

    The variability of this moth overlaps with the variability of Chloroclystis pallidiplaga, so that often they cannot be distinguished.

    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, pp. 67, 377.

    Achille Guenée,
    Uranides et Phalénites,
    in Boisduval & Guenée:
    Histoire naturelle des insectes; spécies général des lépidoptères,
    Volume 9, Part 10 (1857), p. 352, No. 1471.

    Peter B. McQuillan, Jan A. Forrest, David Keane, & Roger Grund,
    Caterpillars, moths, and their plants of Southern Australia,
    Butterfly Conservation South Australia Inc., Adelaide (2019), pp. 106-107.

    Peter Marriott,
    Moths of Victoria: Part 3,
    Waves & Carpets - GEOMETROIDEA (C)
    Entomological Society of Victoria, 2011, pp. 30-31.

    Australian Butterflies
    Australian Moths

    (updated 26 February 2013, 10 October 2018, 5 September 2020, 12 February 2021, 5 May 2022)