Pararguda rufescens (Walker, 1855)
Rufous Snout Moth
(also known as Digglesia rufescens)
LASIOCAMPINAE,   LASIOCAMPIDAE,   BOMBYCOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

Pararguda rufescens
early instar, magnified
(Photo: courtesy of Steven Dodge, Nowra, New South Wales)

The caterpillars of this species are furry, with hairs along the sides hanging down like a skirt over their legs, and hairs on the thorax projecting out in front of the head like a moustache. Early instars are a variety of colours, with two pairs of black spots on the back of each segment, and a black and white head.

Pararguda rufescens
late instar
(Photo: courtesy of Richard Glatz, SARDI Entomology, South Australia)

Later instars become fawn, and develop three black iconic marks on the back, each having two small raised pink knobs.

Pararguda rufescens
(Photo: courtesy of Richard Glatz, SARDI Entomology, South Australia)

The caterpillars have been found feeding on various Gum trees (MYRTACEAE) including:

  • Kangaroo Island Narrow-leaf Mallee (Eucalyptus cneorifolia), and
  • Narrow-leaved Ironbark (Eucalyptus crebra), and

    .

    Pararguda rufescens
    pupa

    Pararguda rufescens
    cocoon
    (Photos: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria - Part 1)

    Pupation occurs in a papery silk cocoon spun among leaves of the foodplant.

    Pararguda rufescens
    (Photo: courtesy of Laura Levens, Upper Beaconsfield, Victoria)

    The adult moths have brown wings with scalloped edges. The females have thread-like antennae, a fat abdomen, and a wingspan of about 5 cms. The females have an obtuse angle at the tornus of each forewing.

    Pararguda rufescens
    female
    (Photo: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria - Part 1)

    The males have forewings that have nearly a right angle at the tornus. The males have feathery antennae, and a wingspan of about 4 cms.

    Pararguda rufescens
    male
    (Photo: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria - Part 1)

    The males often rest facing downwards on a tree trunk by day.

    Pararguda rufescens
    male, typical daytime resting position
    (Photo: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria - Part 1)

    The species is found in Australia in:

  • Queensland,
  • New South Wales,
  • Victoria,
  • Tasmania,
  • South Australia, and
  • Western Australia.


    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, pl. 12.6, p. 389.

    Peter Marriott,
    Moths of Victoria - Part 1,
    Silk Moths and Allies - BOMBYCOIDEA
    ,
    Entomological Society of Victoria, 2008, pp. 6-9.

    Francis Walker,
    Lepidoptera Heterocera,
    List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
    Part 6 (1855), p. 1395, No. 16.


    previous
    back
    caterpillar
    Australian
    Australian Butterflies
    butterflies
    Australian
    home
    Lepidoptera
    Australian
    Australian Moths
    moths
    next
    next
    caterpillar

    (updated 25 February 2010, 19 April 2018, 26 March 2019)