Cryptophasa spilonota Scott, 1864
XYLORYCTIDAE ,   GELECHIOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


drawing by Harriet and Helena Scott
,
Australian Lepidoptera, Volume 1 (1864), Plate 3,
image courtesy of Biodiversity Heritage Library, digitized by Australian Museum.

This Caterpillar is a variable grey colour, with a series of spots along the back. The head is dark brown. The caterpillar bores a hole into the branch of a tree exuding silk and frass from the entrance. It has been found feeding on various trees, including :

  • Old Man Banksia ( Banksia serrata, PROTEACEAE ).

    The caterpillars grow to a length of about 4 cms. The caterpillars pupate in their borehole.


    drawing by Harriet and Helena Scott
    ,
    Australian Lepidoptera, Volume 1 (1864), Plate 3,
    image courtesy of Biodiversity Heritage Library, digitized by Australian Museum.

    The adult moth has white forewings speckled with grey. The hindwings are white. The wingspan is about 4 cms.

    The species has been found in :

  • New South Wales.


    Further reading :

    Michael F. Braby and Penny Olsen.
    A Flutter of Butterflies,
    National Library of Australia, 2011, p. 98.

    Ian McMillan,
    Cryptophasa spilonota, Xyloryctine Moths of Australia,
    Blog, Tuesday, August 17, 2010.

    Harriet, Helena, and Alexander W. Scott,
    Australian Lepidoptera,
    Australian Lepidoptera and their Transformations,
    Volume 1 (1864), p. 10, and also Plate 3.


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    (written 19 June 2014)