Perfect Tussock Moth
(previously known as : Teara pura)
LYMANTRIIDAE , NOCTUOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of David & Judy Addleton, Kempsey, New South Wales)
This caterpillar is yellow with an orange head and is covered in long white hairs. These include a tussock on the back of each of the first four abdominal segments.
Specimens have been observed devouring the leaves of :
The caterpillar pupates under a leaf in a voluminous loose cocoon containing the discarded larval skin and many larval hairs.
The adult female moth is white, with a pattern of broken thin brown lines on the forewings. She has white hindwings. It has a wingspan of about 6 cms.
The male has more pronounced brown lines, and has orange hind wings with dark margins. The male has a span of about 4 cms. The undersides show a black dot in the middle of each wing.
Our female specimen laid about 200 eggs on the cocoon. They were pale yellow and shaped like a doughnut, with a diameter of about 0.5 mm.
The species has been taken in
Further reading :
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia, Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 55.5, p. 428.
Peter Marriott ,
Moths of Victoria - Part 2, Tiger Moths and Allies - NOCTUOIDEA (A) ,
Entomological Society of Victoria, 2009, pp. 18-19.
(updated 14 April 2011)