Aglaosoma variegata (Walker, 1855)
Patterned Notodontid
(one synonym: Aglaosoma lauta Scott, 1864)
THAUMETOPOEINAE,   NOTODONTIDAE,   NOCTUOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


drawing by Harriet and Helena Scott, listed as Aglaosoma lauta
,
Australian Lepidoptera, Volume 1 (1864), Plate 5,
image courtesy of Biodiversity Heritage Library, digitized by Australian Museum.

These caterpillars are pale grey and hairy, with a set of brown dorsal lumps along the body, bands of blue spots behind the head, and a row or blues spots along each side.


(Photo: courtesy of Michael Jefferies, Dalcouth, Queensland)

The hairs are brown or black, with pale tips.


(Photo: courtesy of Stephen Walker, south-east Queensland)

The head is hairy.


(Photo: courtesy of Stephen Walker, south-east Queensland)

The caterpillars feed on various plants, including:

  • Mat Rush ( Lomandra species, ASPARAGACEAE ),
  • Beach She Oak ( Casuarina equisetifolia, CASUARINACEAE ),
  • Bushy Whitebeard (Leucopogon pimeleoides, ERICACEAE )
  • Sydney Wattle ( Acacia longifolia, MIMOSACEAE ), and
  • Heath-Leaved Banksia ( Banksia ericifolia, PROTEACEAE ).


    empty pupa
    (Photo: courtesy of Peter Marriott, Moths of Victoria: Part 2)

    The pupa is tubby and brown, formed inside a cocoon in the ground litter.


    male
    (Photo: courtesy of Andrew Bold, Moths of Victoria: Part 2
    Tiger Moths and their Allies - Noctuoidea (A))

    The adult moths have forewings that each have a striking pattern of black and white, with some small red streaks near the middle that fade in museum specimens. The hindwings are plain pale grey or brown with dark veins. The margins of all the wings are chequered. The thorax is black and hairy. The abdomen has alternate bands of black and orange hairs. The male has feathery antennae, and a hairy tail. The wingspan of the male is about 5 cms.


    female
    (Specimen: courtesy of Macleay Museum, University of Sydney)

    The female has thread-like antennae, and a less hairy tail. The wingspan of the female is about 6 cms.


    male
    (Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, Kuranda, Queensland)

    The species is found in

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


    female, drawing by Harriet and Helena Scott, listed as Aglaosoma lauta
    ,
    Australian Lepidoptera, Volume 1 (1864), Plate 5,
    image courtesy of Biodiversity Heritage Library, digitized by Australian Museum.


    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, pls. 17.6, 30.7, p. 424.

    Peter Marriott,
    Moths of Victoria: part 2,
    Tiger Moths and their Allies - Noctuoidea (A)
    ,
    Entomological Society of Victoria, 2009, pp. 10-11.

    Buck Richardson,
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
    LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 176.

    Harriet, Helena, and Alexander W. Scott,
    Australian Lepidoptera and their Transformations,
    Australian Lepidoptera,
    Volume 1 (1864), p. 15, and also Plate 5.

    Francis Walker,
    Catalogue of Lepidoptera Heterocera,
    List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
    Part 4 (1855), pp. 851-852, No. 9.

    Paul Zborowski and Ted Edwards,
    A Guide to Australian Moths,
    CSIRO Publishing, 2007, p. 173.


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    (updated 12 May 2013, 9 September 2017, 26 August 2018)