Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa
Volume 54, 1923
This text is also available in PDF
(609 KB) Opens in new window
– 148 –

Art. 14.—Notes and Descriptions of New Zealand Lepidoptera.

[Read before the Nelson Institute, 14th September, 1921; received by Editor, 16th September, 1921; issued separately, 12th February, 1923.]

Noctuidae.

Aletia dentata n. sp.

♂♀ 34–36 mm. Head and palpi grey mixed with fuscous, paler in ♀ Antennae grey, in ♂ fasciculate-ciliate, ciliations nearly 1. Thorax and abdomen grey, anal tuft in ♂ tinged with ochreous. Legs fuscous-grey, tarsi annulated with ochreous. Forewings moderate, costa subsinuate, apex rounded, termen evenly rounded, oblique; grey tinged with ochreous and irrorated with dark fuscous; a black dot on costa at base; first line very obscure, irregular, deeply indented above dorsum, whitish-ochreous, anteriorly margined with black; orbicular circular, pale-ringed; claviform very indistinct, touching first line; reniform blackish, in ♂ very indistinct, in ♀ ochreous-margined, dilated on lower half; an obscure dark median shade; second line strongly dentate, excurved to middle, thence incurved to dorsum, dentations tipped with white; a dark interrupted terminal shade, dilated on costa and enclosing three whitish-ochreous dots: cilia ochreous-grey mixed with fuscous. Hindwings dark fuscous, becoming ochreous towards base: cilia ochreous with traces of a dark basal line. Hindwings beneath ochreous with a broad fuscous band on termen; a dark-fuscous striga from base almost touching a prominent fuscous discal spot.

Near A. cuneata Philp., but distinguished by the dark coloration and the prominent ochreous cilia of the hindwings. Tongariro, 5,000 ft., in January. Mr. J. G. Myers discovered this interesting species. He found several resting during the day on rocks, and many others dead inside the mountain-hut. The types are in the collection of the Dominion Museum, to which they were presented by Mr. Myers, and a single paratype is in the collections of Mr. Myers, the Cawthron Institute, and the describer.

Hydriomenidae.

Chloroclystis punicea n. sp.

♂ 25 mm. Head green mixed with yellow. Palpi ochreous. Antennae, shaft ochreous, annulated with brown, ciliations 4. Thorax green, densely mixed with ochreous and golden scales. Abdomen green, much mixed with blackish on basal segments and with ochreous on apical ones; anal tuft whitish; a black spot on five or six median segments. Legs whitish-ochreous, anterior tarsi annulated with dark fuscous. Forewings, costa almost straight, apex abtuse, termen evenly rounded, bright green irrorated with fuscous and sprinkled with yellow; an indistinct curved reddish-brown basal fascia; first fascia broad, irregular, curved, reddish-brown, posterior margin broadly indented at middle; two or three indistinct curved waved lines preceding first and the whole area flushed with pink; median band traversed by several indistinct irregular thin fuscous lines; posterior edge of median band twice incurved on upper half, thence irregularly incurved

– 149 –

to dorsum, broadly margined with a pink area posteriorly which is traversed by several indistinct fuscous lines following the contour of the band; a serrated clear green subterminal line; termen marked with an almost continuous blackish line: cilia greyish-green barred with black. Hindwings white, tinged with pink round termen and dorsum; numerous irregular fuscous transverse lines, those on the basal half reaching only middle of wing; a dark discal dot before middle; an interrupted blackish line round termen, preceded by a greenish shade: cilia whitish-grey obscurely barred with fuscous. Hindwings beneath with a prominent blackish spot at ⅓ and a median chain of blackish spots sharply angulated at middle.

Near to the bilineolata-paralodes group. The pink suffusion seems to be a good distinguishing character.

A single ♂ taken at Rowallan, Waiau, in December. Holotype in coll. A. Philpott.

Crambidae.

Tauroscopa notabilis n. sp.

♂ 20 mm. Head, palpi, and thorax black mixed with ochreous-whitish. Antennae black. Abdomen fuscous-black, anal tuft mixed with ochreous. Legs fuscous, tibiae and tarsi almost wholly whitish-ochreous. Forewings rather short, costa slightly arched at base, thence straight, apex rectangular, termen faintly rounded, little oblique, blackish-fuscous sprinkled with ochreous and white scales; an indistinct basal line, curved, irregular, white; first line from ⅓ costa to ⅖ dorsum, dentate at middle, white, suffusedly margined anteriorly and narrowly posteriorly with black; a discal blackish blotch in whitish median shade; second line from ¼ costa to ⅘ dorsum, weakly dentate, roundly projecting above middle, white, narrowly margined anteriorly and suffusedly posteriorly, except at middle, with blackish; a subterminal whitish shade; a series of round black spots on termen: cilia grey, tips whitish. Hindwings pale fuscous: cilia fuscous, tips whitish.

Somewhat resembling T. trapezitis Meyr., but at once distinguished by the shape of the first and second lines.

Mount Peel, Nelson, in December. The unique specimen was given to me many years ago by the late Augustus Hamilton, and I deferred describing the species in the hope of obtaining further material.

Holotype (♂) in coll. A. Philpott.

Pterophoridae.

Platyptilia pulverulenta n. sp.

♂ 23 mm. Head whitish, with a projecting conical tuft of hair. Antennae reddish-brown mixed with whitish. Palpi reddish. Thorax reddish-brown densely mixed with white. Abdomen greyish-brown. Legs reddish-brown broadly banded with ochreous-whitish. Forewings narrow, apex acute, termen of first segment concave, of second evenly rounded; reddish-brown, densely sprinkled with white on basal ⅔ and more sparingly on second segment and lower half of first; a blackish-brown triangular blotch on costa at ¾, its apex below cleft: cilia brown mingled with white. Hindwings pale reddish-brown: cilia paler; third segment with fairly even basal series of dark spatulate scales extending to near tornus.

Nearest to P. aeolodes Meyr., but without the subterminal white line; the evenly rounded termen of the second segment of the forewing is also a good distinguishing character.

The unique example was taken at Nelson in November, and is now in the collection of the Cawthron Institute.

– 150 –

Platyptilia ferruginea n. sp.

♂ 21 mm. Head bright ferruginous with many white scales. Palpi ferruginous, terminal joint mixed with white. Antennae ferruginous-grey. Thorax bright ferruginous sprinkled with white points. Abdomen ferruginous, segmental divisions mixed with white. Legs, anterior pair ferruginous mingled with white, posterior pair ferruginous, tarsi broadly annulated with white. Forewings cleft from ¾, segments rather narrow, termen of first sinuate, of second evenly rounded; bright ferruginous densely sprinkled with white; costal edge blackish-red to ⅔; an elongate dark reddish-fuscous mark on fold near base; spots of similar colour beneath costa at ⅓ and on dorsum at ½, the latter large and suffused; a triangular blackish-brown blotch on costa at ⅔, its apex below cleft; a white spot on costa following blackish blotch; a thin white subterminal line crossing both segments, broadly margined anteriorly with blackish-brown; costal edge above subterminal line narrowly white: cilia ferruginous mixed with white; a dark basal line, within cleft almost wholly whitish, on dorsum mixed with black scales almost to tornus. Hindwings, first cleft from middle, second from ⅕; pale ferruginous: cilia ferruginous-grey; on dorsum a basal line of blackish-red; spatulate scales extending almost to tornus.

Somewhat resembling P. falcatalis Walk., but smaller and more brightly coloured. The forewings are narrower and the termen of the first segment is less concave. In the hindwing the prominent median tooth of scales present in falcatalis is absent in ferruginea.

A single example, secured on the Mount Arthur tableland at an elevation of about 4,500 ft. The specimen was taken late in February, on the bank of a small stream in an open place in the forest. Holotype (♂) in coll. Cawthron Institute.

Tortricidae.

Epichorista emphanes Meyr., Trans. Ent. Soc. Lond. (1901), p. 571. E. theatralis Philp., Trans. N.Z. Inst., vol. 50, p. 128, 1918.

The acquirement of abundant material from the Mount Arthur tableland has shown me that the above correction is necessary. The female of emphanes is very variable, and the handsome theatralis is but one of the extreme forms.

Tortrix spatiosa n. sp.

♂ 27 mm. Head, palpi, and thorax purplish-brown tinged with grey, Antennae ochreous-brown, ciliations 1. Abdomen ochreous. Legs ochreous, anterior tarsi brown. Forewings moderate, fold extending to near middle of costa, costa oblique to middle, moderately arched, apex rectangular, termen subsinuate, rounded beneath, hardly oblique; purplish-brown, with ochreous suffusion; median band slightly darker, very obscure, broadly dilated on lower portion, anterior margin indented beneath costa; some whitish scales on costal edge at ½; a triangular area on costa before apex darker; terminal area ochreous: cilia bright ochreous. Hindwings whitish-grey obscurely mottled with darker: cilia whitish, tinged with ochreous round apex and termen.

♀ 28 mm. Head, palpi, and thorax pale purplish-brown tinged with pink. Abdomen pale ochreous. Legs ochreous. Forewings extremely strongly arched basally, slightly sinuate before apex, apex round-pointed, termen sinuate, not oblique, rounded beneath; ochreous, crossed with

– 151 –

numerous fine waved brownish lines; costa obscurely margined with silvery metallic scales; median fascia faintly indicated, running obliquely from costa before middle to before tornus, anterior margin indented beneath costa; a triangular purplish-brown blotch, thickly strewn with silvery metallic scales, on costa before apex: cilia ochreous, brownish at apex. Hindwings whitish, ochreous on apical ⅓: cilia whitish-ochreous, brownish round apex.

A very fine species. The male is very similar to some forms of T. excessana (Walk.), but is easily separated by the different costal contour of the forewing. The female is remarkable for the unusually strong basal arching of the forewing.

Mr. G. V. Hudson has examples of both sexes taken at Routeburn, Wakatipu, in February, 1911. I secured a very fine ♀ on the Dun Mountain in January, at an elevation of 2,500 ft. Holotype (♀) in coll. A. Philpott; allotype (♂) in coll. G. V. Hudson.

Eucosmidae.

Eucosma plebeiana (Zell.), Is., vol. 10, p. 721; Meyr., Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W., vol. 36, p. 248, 1911.

This species has to be added to the New Zealand list, it having been taken in fair numbers at Nelson during the past summer and autumn. Nearly all the specimens were secured at light, the first example appearing early in December and the species not being over till about the end of May. From Mr. D. Miller, Government Entomologist, I learn that the moth has been reared from a larva found feeding on the leaves of Eucalyptus. Meyrick states that the larva feeds on Althaea and Lavatera, and was probably introduced into Australia with these plants. He adds that the species occurs now in suitable localities throughout a large part of the globe. Dr. A. Jefferis Turner, of Adelaide, who kindly determined the species for me, says that it is abundant in Australia, and has also occurred in Norfolk Island. As Zeller's description is not easy of reference to New Zealand students, I submit a brief diagnosis.

♂♀ 15–18 mm. Head and thorax dull ochreous. Forewing rather elongate, costa evenly but not strongly arched, apex obtuse, termen sinuate, oblique; grey densely irrorated with fuscous; basal patch more strongly infuscate, extending on costa to ⅓ and on dorsum to ½, upper ⅔ of margin oblique; numerous short outwardly-oblique dark strigulae along costa, longer and transverse near apex; a triangular dark-fuscous spot on tornus; in ♀ the upper half of the wing is sometimes suffused with pale ochreous: cilia grey with four or five rows of dark points. Hindwings fuscous-grey, in ♂ with an erect tuft of dense hair on and beneath Cu1 at base: cilia grey with a thick dark basal line.

Oecophoridae.

Borkhausenia xanthodesma n. sp.

♂♀ 12–15 mm. Head, palpi and thorax dark brown. Antennae dark brown annulated with yellowish. Abdomen dark brown, anal tuft yellowish. Legs greyish-ochreous. Forewings, costa slightly arched, apex broadly rounded, termen oblique; dark brown; markings clear yellow; a fascia almost touching base, narrow at costa, thence strongly dilated; a slightly curved, irregular-edged fascia from ¼ costa to ½ dorsum; a

– 152 –

similar fascia from ½ costa to ¾ dorsum; a narrower fascia from ⅘ costa, inwardly oblique and nearly or quite joining preceding fascia above tornus; a broad regular fascia along termen: cilia dark brown. Hindwings and cilia dark brown.

Belongs to the chrysogramma-compsogramma group, but differs from the former in having five yellow fasciae instead of four, and from the latter in the arrangement of the third and fourth fasciae, which do not form a definite loop as in that species.

Otago, in forest; common from November to February. On the Hunter Mountains a form occurs in which the fasciae are frequently tinged with orange-reddish. Holotype (♂), allotype (♀), and a series of cotypes in coll. A. Philpott.

Trachypepla roseata n. sp.

♂ 13 mm. Head white mixed with brown. Palpi whitish, second segment outwardly mixed with brownish-black, terminal segment with a subapical ring and some scattered scales brownish-black. Antennae brown, ciliations 1. Thorax brown mixed with white. Abdomen greyish-ochreous. Legs ochreous, tarsi banded with fuscous. Forewings moderate, apex rounded, termen oblique; greyish-brown sprinkled with dark fuscous; a small black blotch on costa at base followed by a whitish area slightly tinged with ochreous; two tufts of rosy-pink scales at about ¼, the second obliquely above the first; a broad whitish band, enclosing some fuscous colouring, from costa atto dorsum at ⅓, strongly excurved; second line thin, sharply angulated outwards beneath costa, white, anteriorly margined with black on lower ⅔: cilia fuscous mixed with white. Hindwings greyish-fuscous: cilia greyish-fuscous, tips whitish.

Near T. spartodeta Meyr., but differing in the rosy scale tufts and the sharper angulation of the second line.

Mr. G. V. Hudson is the discoverer of this pretty species, he having taken a specimen, in rather poor condition, at Takaka, Nelson. At his desire I am describing the species from a second example, taken by myself on the Dun Mountain, Nelson, at 2,000 ft., in January. I have adopted Mr. Hudson's manuscript specific name. Holotype (♂) in coll. Cawthron Institute.

Heliodinidae.

Stathmopoda distincta n. sp.

♂♀ 13–15 mm. Head, palpi, and thorax yellowish-white, darker in female. Antennae ochreous, infuscated on apical half. Abdomen ochreous-grey. Legs whitish-ochreous. Forewings elongate, narrow, costa almost straight, apex acute, termen extremely oblique; yellow; a thick reddish-brown outwardly-oblique bar from dorsum at ⅓, not quite reaching costa; a similar suffused bar from costa at ⅔ to dorsum; in some examples the area surrounding bars is much irrorated with reddish-brown: cilia pale fuscous tinted with ochreous round apex. Hindwings fuscous-grey: cilia slightly paler.

Not closely related to any other species of the genus, though having some similarity in general appearance to S. caminora Meyr.

Dun Mountain, Nelson, in December and January. The species occurs in the forest from the base of the mountain to 3,000 ft., but it is not common. Holotype (♀), allotype (♂), and two paratypes in coll. Cawthron Institute.

– 153 –

Glyphipterygidae.

Hierodoris frigida n. sp.

♂♀ 11–13 mm. Head and thorax dark fuscous with violet and purplish metallic reflections. Palpi yellow, terminal segment infuscated. Antennae black with grey pubescence. Abdomen fuscous-black densely irrorated with shining golden scales, segmental divisions grey, anal tuft fuscous mixed with greyish-white. Legs dark fuscous, tibiae and tarsi annulated with yellowish-white. Forewings moderate, costa slightly arched, apex obtuse, termen slightly rounded, little oblique; dark fuscous mixed with black; a broad band of scattered white scales from costa atto dorsum at ⅓; an irregular white spot on costa at ⅔; three irregular violet-purple spots, first and second beneath costa before and beyond white costal spot, third below second, sometimes coalescing with it; a broad subterminal band of scattered white scales, frequently occupying the whole of the space beyond metallic spots: cilia fuscous. Hindwings dark fuscous: cilia pale fuscous with dark basal line.

Differs from H. iophanes Meyr. in the presence of the white bands and the arrangement of the metallic areas.

Dun Mountain, Nelson, in January, Fairly common at 3,000 ft., flying close to the ground beneath Leptospermum and other scrubs. Holotype (♂), allotype (♀), and a series of paratypes in coll. Cawthron Institute.

Hepialidae.

Porina mimica n. sp.

♂♀ 34 mm. Head, palpi, and thorax dull brown. Antennae brown, in ♂ moderately dentate-ciliate. Abdomen ochreous. Legs whitish-ochreous. Forewings rather short, costa subsinuate, apex rounded, termen oblique; pale-brownish mixed with white; a suffused dark-brown central stripe from base to ¾, sometimes almost obsolete, enclosing the following whitish spots: a circular one near base, two or three more or less oval ones arranged transversely at ¼, an irregularly triangular one at ½, and sometimes a small linear one immediately beyond this; a whitish shade from before apex to dorsum at ½, enclosing a series of irregular dark-brown spots; a terminal series of white-ringed dark-brown spots, sometimes almost obsolete: cilia ochreous mixed with brown. Hindwings pale-brownish slightly tinged with ochreous: cilia greyish-ochreous mixed with brown.

♀ 38 mm. Forewings dull dark brown; the central stripe is absent or obscured and the white transverse shade is not noticeable. The triple spot at ¼ is present, but the lower one of the group is the largest. An interrupted waved white line runs from beyond apex to ½ dorsum, and there is a series of obscure white marks following this, also a terminal chain of white lunules. The hindwings are pale fuscous.

Much smaller than P. jocosa Meyr., its nearest ally, and less ochreous. The antennal pectinations of the male are slightly longer in proportion.

Invercargill, in October. Holotype (♂), allotype (♀), and one male paratype in coll. A. Philpott. One male paratype in coll. G. V. Hudson.

Porina senex Huds., Trans. N.Z. Inst., vol. 40, p. 107, 1908.

Only four or five specimens of this species have so far been recorded, all of which have proved to be males. Mr. F. S. Oliver has now secured the female, and that sex is so different from the other that I here give a detailed description of it.

– 154 –

♀ 40 mm. Head black, crown white. Palpi brown mixed with whitish. Antennae brownish-black, shortly bipectinate. Thorax dark reddish-brown, collar broadly whitish. Abdomen glossy brownish-black. Legs very dark brown, tarsi narrowly annulated with ochreous. Forewings rather short, not dilated posteriorly, costa subsinuate, apex bluntly rounded, termen bowed, very oblique; sooty-brown; markings white; a line beneath costa from base to ¾, where it connects with a dark-centred ring-spot; a median fascia from base, suffusedly dilated posteriorly, its lower edge almost touching a rounded spot in disc at ¼; a bent linear mark on dorsum beneath this spot; a large elongate-oval spot beneath costa before middle; an irregularly triangular blotch before tornus, its apex pointing towards base; an irregular fascia from apex to disc at ⅔, enclosing one or more dark dots; some white scales round termen: cilia short, brown mixed with white. Hindwings dark fuscous with a few white marks beneath costa apically.

Mr. Oliver took a single example at Glenorchy, Wakatipu, in December, at an elevation of about 5,000 ft. He has since obtained further examples from the same locality.

Micropterygidae.

Sabatinca demissa n. sp.

♀ 6–5 mm. Head ochreous, with a dense spreading frontal tuft of long coarse hair. Antennae ochreous, with broad blackish bands at base, at ½, and before apex. Thorax ochreous. Abdomen fuscous-grey. Legs ochreous, tarsi annulated with blackish. Forewings rather broad, apex broadly pointed; ochreous irrorated with dark fuscous; three or four incomplete black strigae on apical ¼: cilia ochreous, with a black bar marking apex of wing. Hindwings and cilia grey-fuscous.

One of the smaller species, but not closely associated with S. zonodoxa Meyr. or S. rosicoma Meyr. The bi-coloured antennae and the spreading head-tufts recall S. eodora Meyr., but the markings are entirely different.

Three specimens taken by Dr. R. J. Tillyard at Te Wairoa Waterfall, near Lake Tarawera, in November. Holotype (♀) and a paratype in coll. Cawthron Institute.

Sabatinca incongruella Walk., Cat. Brit. Mus., vol. 28, p. 511, 1863.

It may be worth while recording the discovery of the cocoon and pupal skin of this species, there being so little known about the early stages of the members of the genus. On the 9th November, 1921, a supply of a species of liverwort found growing freely at a spot where several species of Sabatinca had been taken was secured, and some breeding-cages fitted up, in the hope of ascertaining whether the plant had any connection with the life-history of the genus. On the 30th December a female S. incongruella emerged in one of these cages, and a careful search resulted in the finding of the cocoon and cast pupal skin. No other emergences took place, but it seems likely that the liverwort is the food-plant of the species, as it is improbable that the moth should have been in the pupal stage at the date when the breeding-cage was prepared.