(one synonym : Zonilia metapyrrha Walker, 1856)
MACROGLOSSINAE, SPHINGIDAE, BOMBYCOIDEA
(Photo: courtesy of Ian Common, from Moths of Australia)
The Caterpillars of this species are grey with a strong horn on the tail, and some white diagonal stripes on the sides. The caterpillars feed on:
The adult moths have brown forewings. The hindwings may be either brown or red. The moths have a wingspan of about 6 cms. Male moths usually have white spots near the middle of each forewing, which are lacking in the females.
The wing coupling mechanism of the male moth, that holds the hind wing to the forewing during flight, is a hook-like tubercle called the 'retinaculum' near the lower margin of each forewing, and a bristle at the base of the hindwing called the 'frenulum'. Females have a similar device but the single bristle is replaced by a cluster of very fine bristles and the retinaculum is not as obvious. This difference is a good way of determining the sex of adult hawk moths.
The species has been found in :
Further reading :
Ian F.B. Common,
Moths of Australia,
Melbourne University Press, 1990, fig. 41.7, pl. 29.6, p. 413.
Lepidoptera legacy of the summer that was 2010/11,
Issue 61 (June 2011), pp. 18-20,
Butterflies and Other Invertebrates Club.
Tropical Queensland Wildlife from Dusk to Dawn Science and Art,
LeapFrogOz, Kuranda, 2015, p. 203.
Catalogue of Lepidoptera Heterocera. Sphingidae,
List of the Specimens of Lepidopterous Insects in the Collection of the British Museum,
Part 8 (1856), p. 196, No. 9.
(updated 22 April 2013, 28 February 2016, 15 November 2019)