Macroglossum insipida Butler, 1875
(one synonym : Macroglossum troglodytus Boisduval, [1875])
MACROGLOSSINAE ,   SPHINGIDAE ,   BOMBYCOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


(Photo: courtesy of David Mohn,, Chinese Christian Seminary, Hong Kong)

The Caterpillars of this species are initially green, but the last instar is sometimes brown, with diagonal dark stripes and with white speckles. All instars have a spine on the tail (which is quite harmless). The Caterpillars grow to a length of about 5 cms. They feed on various plants from RUBIACEAE, including :

  • Borreria,
  • Hedyotis,
  • Small Honeysuckle Vine ( Paederia scandens ),
  • Shaggy Buttonweed ( Spermacoce hispida ),

    and has also been found on

  • White Jute ( Corchorus capsularis, MALVACEAE ).


    (Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, Kuranda)

    The adult moths have a pattern of light and dark brown or grey on the forewings, and yellow hindwings with broad black margins. The wingspan is about 4 cms.

    The eggs are white and spherical with a diameter of about 1 mm. They are laid singly on the underside of leaves of a foodplant.


    (Photo: courtesy of David L. Mohn, Chinese Christian Seminary, Hong Kong)

    The species is found over Asia, including

  • Borneo,
  • China,
  • Hong Kong,
  • Japan,
  • Papua,

    as well as Australia in

  • Queensland.


    Further reading:

    Arthur G. Butler,
    Descriptions of new species of Sphingidae,
    Proceedings of the general meetings for scientific business of the Zoological Society of London,
    1875, pp. 242-243.


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    (updated 7 February 2012)