Theretra indistincta (Butler, 1877)
(one synonym : Chaerocampa cleopatra Miskin, 1891)
MACROGLOSSINAE,   SPHINGIDAE,   BOMBYCOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans,
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


early instar
(Photo : courtesy of Tom and David Sleep, Queensland)

These caterpillars are green or brown, with a row of white encircled green spots with white centres along each side, one per segment. The tail has a stout red horn curving back with a black tip. The caterpillars have been found feeding on the foliage of:

  • Cultivated Grape Vine ( Vitis vinifera, VITACEAE ).


    later instar
    (Photo : courtesy of Tom and David Sleep, Queensland)

    The mottled brown form of the caterpillar still has lateral rows of green circled spots and red tailhorn with a black tip.


    (Photo : courtesy of Tom and David Sleep, Queensland)

    The pupa is mottled brown, with two prominent black spots each side, beside the developing wing chambers.


    (Photo : courtesy of Tom and David Sleep, Queensland)

    The adult moths of this species are brown. The forewings each have a small dark spot near the middle, and a faint dark subterminal line. The hindwings are darker but each has a pale margin. Uniquely, the moths have pink antennae. The wingspan is about 10 cms.


    (Photo : courtesy of Tom and David Sleep, Queensland)

    Specimens of this species have been caught in

  • New Guinea,
  • Sulawesi,

    and in Australia in

  • Northern Territory,
  • Queensland, and
  • New South Wales.


    Further reading :

    Arthur G. Butler,
    On some African and Australian Lepidoptera,
    The Annals and Magazine of Natural History,
    Series 4, Volume 19 (1877), p. 460.

    Buck Richardson,
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
    LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 203.


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    (updated 5 April 2006, 16 February 2014)