Capusa senilis Walker, 1857
Black-banded Wedge-moth
(one synonym : Chlenias umbraticaria Guenée, 1857)
NACOPHORINI ,   ENNOMINAE ,   GEOMETRIDAE ,   GEOMETROIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Cathy Young & Stella Crossley

Capusa senilis
(Photo: courtesy of Cathy Young)

This Caterpillar is initially green with yellow spots.

Capusa senilis
(Photo: courtesy of Cathy Young)

Later its body becomes yellow, with a partial dark line along the middle of the back, and has white spiracles with dark outlines, red true legs, and a dark head.

Capusa senilis
(Photo: courtesy of Cathy Young)

Later still it becomes reddish-brown, with a partial dark line along the middle of the back, retaining the black and white spiracles. The caterpillar feeds on the foliage of :

  • plants from the Pea family ( FABACEAE ),
  • Gum Trees ( Eucalyptus species, MYRTACEAE ), and
  • Pine trees ( PINACEAE ).

    Capusa senilis
    (Photo: Don Herbison-Evans, Manly, New South Wales)

    The adult moth has striated grey forewings, sometimes with brown patches. The hindwings are mainly white with black wingtips.

    Capusa senilis
    (Photo: courtesy of the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney)

    Unusually for Geometrids, the moth folds its wings tightly along its back when at rest, making a wedge shape that tapers to a point at the end of the abdomen. The hairs on the thorax make a crest that projects forward over the head. The wingspan is about 5 cms.

    Capusa senilis
    (Photo: copyright of Brett and Marie Smith, at Ellura Sanctuary, South Australia)

    The eggs are white with a dark dimple in the top, and are roughly spherical with a fine hexangonal embossed pattern. They are laid in a regular array.

    Capusa senilis
    eggs, magnified
    (Photo: courtesy of Cathy Young)

    The species is found over the south-eastern quarter of Australia, including

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

    Capusa senilis
    underside, female
    (Photo: copyright of Brett and Marie Smith, at Ellura Sanctuary, South Australia)


    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 34.13, pp. 67, 365.

    Marilyn Hewish,
    Moths of Victoria: Part 5 - Satin Moths and Allies - GEOMETROIDEA (A),
    Entomological Society of Victoria, 2014, pp. 30-31.

    Francis Walker,
    Geometrites,
    List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
    Part 11 (1857), p. 621, No. 1.

    Cathy Young,
    Characterisation of the Australian Nacophorini and a Phylogeny for the Geometridae from Molecular and Morphological Data,
    Ph.D. thesis, University of Tasmania, 2003.


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    (updated 26 September 2010, 2 June 2017)