(one synonym is Psilogramma mastrigti Eitschberger, 2001)
SPHINGINAE, SPHINGIDAE, BOMBYCOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Dick Whitford, Julatten, Queensland)
The first instar Caterpillars of this species are green with a long green tail spike which sometimes turns dark brown. Middle instars develop a white diagonal stripe which extends up the tail spike on the last abdominal segment, and white tubercles on the head, thorax, tail spike, and claspers.
Later instars develop white diagonal stripes on every segment.
The caterpillars have been found feeding on various plants from several families, including
In the last instars, some of the tubercles become hard and conical and black. Variable areas of the skin become dark brown behind the thorax, along the back, and behind the prolegs.
The caterpillar grows to a length of about 10 cms. When mature, it often wanders through the night seeking a suitable pupation site. It then burrows down in the soil, making a chamber below the surface down to a depth of about 10 cms. The pupa has a length of about 6 cms.
The adult moth has long narrow pale grey or brown forewings, with variable darker grey and white areas separated by dark serrated lines. The hindwings mainly plain fawn with variable pale patches by the tornus, and have slightly concave hind margins.
The wingspan of the male is about 11 cms. The wingspan of the female is about 15 cms.
The eggs are pale green and oval, with a length of about 2 mms. They are laid singly under a leaf of a foodplant. The eggs develop a pink ring as hatching approaches.
The species occurs in
and also in Australia in
Further reading :
Einige generelle Anmerkungen zur Gattung Psilogramma Rothschild & Jordan 1903, mit Beschreibung neuer Arten (Lepidoptera, Sphingidae),
Volume 9, Part 2 (2001), pp. 6-47.
Max S. Moulds, James P. Tuttle and David A. Lane.
Hawkmoths of Australia,
Monographs on Australian Lepidoptera Series, Volume 13 (2020),
pp. 229-232, Plates 58, 74, 90.
Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 207.
(written 29 February 2016, updated 19 August 2018)