Angonyx papuana (Rothschild & Jordan, 1903)
(often misidentified as: Angonyx testacea)
Don Herbison-Evans
Stella Crossley

Angonyx papuana
early instar
(Photo: courtesy of Carol and Trevor Deane, Whyanbeel, Queensland)

These Caterpillars are green with a black tail spike. Later instars develop a narrow black collar around the head, and stripes of various shades of green along the body.

Angonyx papuana
late instar
(Photo: courtesy of Carol and Trevor Deane, Whyanbeel, Queensland)

The caterpillars have been found feeding on

  • Snakewood ( Strychnos minor, LOGANIACEAE ).

    The caterpillars grow to a length of about 6 cms. They pupate in a flimsy cocoon amongst the ground litter. The pupa has a length of about 3.5 cms.

    Angonyx papuana
    (Specimen: courtesy of the The Australian Museum)

    The adult moths have green or greenish-brown forewings, each having a pale band across the middle, and pale wing-tips. The forewings each have a doubly recurved margin, and a concave hind margin. The moths have dark brown hindwings each with a recurved margin and a vague pale submarginal band. The moths have a wingspan of about 5 cms. The green colour fades to brown in dead specimens.

    Angonyx papuana
    (Photo: courtesy of Bart Hacobian, Millaa Millaa, Queensland)

    The species is found in Australasia, including :

  • New Britain,
  • Papua,

    and also Australia in

  • Queensland.

    Angonyx  papuana
    (Photo: courtesy of Neil Hewett , Cooper Creek Wilderness, North Queensland)

    The eggs are laid singly on a foodplant leaf. The eggs are oval and off-white, and develop reddish markings as they mature. The eggs have a length of about 1.6 mm.

    Angonyx papuana
    egg, magnified
    (Photo: courtesy of Carol and Trevor Deane, Whyanbeel, Queensland)

    Further reading :

    Maxwell S. Moulds, James P. Tuttle and David A. Lane.
    Hawkmoths of Australia,
    Monographs on Australian Lepidoptera Series, Volume 13 (2020),
    pp. 69-71, Plates 9, 78, 84.

    Buck Richardson,
    Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
    LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 196.

    Lionel Walter Rothschild & Karl Jordan,
    A revision of the Lepidopterous family Sphingidae,
    Novitates Zoologicae Supplement,
    Volume 9 (1903), p. 544, and also Plate 49, fig 14.

    Australian Butterflies
    Australian Moths

    (updated 26 December 2009, 15 February 2015, 12 July 2019, 7 September 2020)