Trichiocercus mesomelas (Walker, 1855)
(formerly known as Trichetra mesomelas)
THAUMETOPOEINAE ,   NOTODONTIDAE ,   NOCTUOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley

Trichiocercus mesomelas
(Photo: courtesy of Ian McMillan, Imbil, Queensland)

These Caterpillars are reddish with a black saddle on each segment, and a pencil of dark hairs sticking up forwards from behind the head.

The adult moths have white wings, but sometimes these have a scattering of black speckles or are pale brown. For some specimens, the head and thorax are covered in hair which is dark brown on top shading to pale brown at each side, and a black hairy abdomen. Other specimens have totally white hair on the head, thorax, and abdomen. The moths have a wingspan of about 4 cms.

The species has been found in Australia in

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


    Further reading :

    Francis Walker,
    Catalogue of Lepidoptera Heterocera,
    List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
    Part 4 (1855), p. 845, No. 1.


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    (written 12 November 2014)