Saturday, 27 October 2007
Moths 3-The Poofeyhoose Moths
Anisozyga fascinans (Lucas) occurs from Cape York to northern New South Wales
Pyrrhorachis pyrrhogona (Walker). This species is distributed in the tropics from India and Sri Lanka to New Guinea through to Thursday Island to Brisbane and Toowoomba.
Comostola cedilla Prout
Metallochlora sp. probably lineata Warren
Unknown genus and species.
Cholorcoma dichloraria. The caterpillars are known to feed on Acacias.
Agathia pisina. The caterpillars feed on the vine Gymnanthera nitida (Periplocaceae).
Uliocnemis partita. the caterpillars feed on Eucalyptus.
Mentors influence us all when we are young. One of my most influential mentors was C. Don MacNeill. He had an influence on a great many young biologists, most of whom had kept in contact with him over the years. He is greatly missed. Camera Trap Codger (see September) published a touching note on this man. One of the many distinctive terms he had for things was his classification of green geometrid moths as “poofeyhoose moths”. I’m not sure of the spelling of this word or even if it’s a word but it was Don’s word for “outhouse” or “bush toilet”. Inevitably there would be one or more of these green moths on the wall in these places. It was true in California and it is true in Australia! I have harboured that term in my head for over 45 years and it is usually reinforced—when the need arises!
The Kuranda rainforest has a number of very attractive green geometrid moths. They are all members of the Geometrinae, a subfamily with a great many species ranging in size from a centimetre or so across to 3-4 cm. Little is known of their larval stages and few are seen during the day—except, perhaps, in the usual places.