Wattle Cup Caterpillar
(one synonym is : Doratiphora colligans T.P. Lucas, 1901)
LIMACODIDAE , ZYGAENOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of photographer Darren Jew)
The Caterpillars of this species look as though they carry their own TV antennas. They have two large branched spikes protruding from the front and four from the rear, and a series of smaller ones along each side. These all sting. The sting has been described as "worse than 3 wasp stings". The caterpillars are brightly coloured greenish-yellow, and have a red dorsal stripe with a broad blue edging, and a blue band with red patches along each side.
They have been found feeding on :
The caterpillars have reduced legs, and locomote using a slug-like movement of the underside of the body.
The cocoon is formed on a leaf. It is spun out of silk in a small sphere, then covered in a liquid that sets like a tiny cricket ball.
The adult moth has cream forewings with black speckles and a row of brown dots parallel to the margin. The hindwings are pale brown. It has a wingspan of about 3 cms.
The species occurs in :
Further reading :
Arthur G. Butler,
Descriptions of Lepidoptera heterocera from the Australian Region,
Transactions of the Entomological Society of London,
1886, p. 388.
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia, Melbourne University Press, 1990, pl. 8.8, pp. 301-302.
Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 104.
(updated 28 May 2013, 6 January 2014, 10 April 2015)