Wednesday, 24 June 2015

The changing names of moths



Identifying the moth below I came across a common problem.
I found a good example in the colour photos in the book "Moths of Australia" by I.F.B. Common (1990), and he identifies it as Narycia trifasciana PYRALIDAE. Most of the other sources that I use for identification do not recognise that name.

The Natural History Museum in the UK shows it as a valid name but since the results are from scanned card files, they may not have updated the name, and they do not have a picture or illustration of the moth to compare with.

Morwell National Park Online, has a picture that is very similar to my photo and it is named Lepidoscia characota, Atlas of Living Australia also has a similar moth, so this may be the correct species name now.

Unlike people looking up plants where it is relatively easy to find name changes, I have not been able to find a comprehensive list of name changes in moths. No doubt one exists somewhere.
So for the time being I will say it is Lepidoscia, possibly characota species, previously Narycia trifasciana, and maybe in the future I will be able to get confirmation.







Family:- PSYCHIDAE
Sub Family:-
Genus:- Lepidoscia
Species:- characota (possibly)
Probably previously known as Narycia trifasciana

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Scale tufts

As you can see from the selection below, some moths have tufts of scales that can be quite decorative. Some can also have tufts of scales on their on their abdomen and, particularly in the family NOLIDAE, have scale tufts on their wings.




Family:- NOCTUIDAE
Sub Family:- PLUSIINAE
Genus:- Chrysodeixis
Species:- unknown










Family:- NOCTUIDAE
Sub Family:- PLUSIINAE
Genus:- Othreis ( Eudocima )
Species:- fullonia
It appears to have two currently accepted names for genus.







Family:- NOCTUIDAE
Sub Family:- PLUSIINAE
Genus:- Plusiodonta
Species:- arctipennis







Family:- NOCTUIDAE
Sub Family:- PLUSIINAE
Genus:- Thysanoplusia
Species:- orichalcea













Family:-  NOLIDAE
Sub Family:- NOLINAE
Genus:- Nola
Species:- epicentra

Note the light brown tufts on the wings.









Family:- NOLIDAE
Sub Family:- SARROTHRIPINAE
Genus:- Ochthophora
Species:- sericina






Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Family ARCTIIDAE






Family:- ARCTIIDAE
Sub Family:- LITHOSIINAE
Genus:- Asura
Species:-  cervicalis (possibly)

The larvae of moths of the family ARCTIIDAE, sub family LITHOSIINAE mostly feed on lichens, though sometimes mosses or algae. Often brightly coloured in combinations that include  black, yellow, orange and red. There are about 200 species described in Australia.











Family:- ARCTIIDAE
Sub Family:- LITHOSIINAE
Genus:- Termessa (possibly)
Species:- Zonophanes (possibly)












Family:- ARCTIIDAE
Sub Family:- LITHOSIINAE
Genus:- Heliosia
Species:- jucunda
















Family:- ARCTIIDAE
Sub Family:- LITHOSIINAE
Genus:- Termessa
Species:- conographa







Family:- ARCTIIDAE
Sub Family:- LITHOSIINAE
Genus:- Termessa
Species:- conographa

Left:- Pale version

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Family COSMOPTERIGIDAE







 Family:- COSMOPTERIGIDAE
Sub Family:-
Genus:- Pancalia (possibly)
Species:- unknown








Although the above photo is not particularly good, I have included it because it is the only photo I have of this species.
The family Cosmopterigidae mainly feed on Acacia and over the last few years some of our wattles have died and have not yet been replaced. No larval food plant means no moth.
The wingspan of the Cosmopterigidae family is listed as between 6 and 32 mm, generally the ones I see here, are around 6mm body length so a wing span of around 12mm.
As with all members of the Superfamily Gelechioidea, they have sharp, strongly upturned labial palpi. These are the sharp "tusks" just visible over the top of the head.



Family:- COSMOPTERIGIDAE
Sub Family:- COSMOPTERIGINAE
Genus:- Limnaecia
Species:- unknown




Family:- COSMOPTERIGIDAE
Sub Family:- COSMOPTERIGINAE
Genus:- Limnaecia
Species:-  tetraplanetis















Family:- COSMOPTERIGIDAE
Sub Family:- COSMOPTERIGINAE
Genus:- Macrobathra
Species:- bigerella