Painted Pine Moth
(Photo: courtesy of Trevor Jinks, North Burnett, Queensland)
This Caterpillar is usually brown and hairy, and with four dorsal tufts of white or yellow or brown hair on abdominal segments one to four, and two lateral white tufts each side from segments one and two also. The dorsal tuft colour seems to vary with the weather or the instar.
The head is scarlet, with two knobbed black hair pencils each side. There is another grey hair pencil on the tail. The hairs can cause irritation (urticaria) in people who have sensitive skin.
The caterpillars have been found feeding on a variety of plants including:
The caterpillars usually pupate in an off-white cocoon amongst the leaves of the foodplant.
The male has brown patterned forewings, each with a complex spot near the middle, and variable white areas.
The hindwings are plain brown.
The undersides of the wings of the male are brown bearing shadows of the upper suface patterns. The wingspan of the male is about 3 cms.
The female is flightless, and her bulbous body covered in pale brown hair.
The species has been found in :
as well as in Australia in
Further reading :
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia, Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 43.7, pl. 30.10, p. 428.
Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 111.
Catalogue of Lepidoptera Heterocera,
List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
Part 4 (1855), p. 787, No. 16.
(updated 28 February 2012, 26 August 2017)