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Volume 57, 1927
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N.Z. Lepidoptera: Notes and Descriptions.

[Read before the Nelson Philosophical Institute, 2nd September, 1925; received by Editor, 10th September, 1925; issued separately, 19th February, 1927.]


Celama parvitis (Howes). Trans. N.Z. Inst., vol. 49, p. 274.

The type specimen of this interesting species was taken by Mr. C. E. Clarke at Broad Bay, Dunedin, in December, 1915. Mr. Howes, who described it, placed it in Adeixis, to which genus it has considerable superficial resemblance. A second specimen was found in the collection of the late M. O. Pascoe, which is now the property of the Southland Museum, Invercargill. In December, 1924, the writer took a third example at Aniseed Valley, Nelson. The venation and mouth-parts of this specimen were critically examined, and the insect proved to belong to the genus Celama, of the family Nolidae, a most interesting addition to the New Zealand fauna. The Nolidae, which some authorities treat as a sub-family of the Arctiidae, are well represented in Australia, but Dr. A. J. Turner, to whom C. parvitis was submitted, did not recognise it as an Australian form, so that our species is in all probability endemic.


Aletia funerea n. sp.

♀ 37 mm. Head grey with a broad blackish longitudinal stripe on each side of median pale line. Palpi grey, third segment thin, moderately long and very slightly swollen towards apex. Antennae brown, mixed with grey on basal half. Thorax grey with a A-shaped fuscous mark. Abdomen pale fuscous. Legs fuscous grey, tarsi annulated with blackish. Forewings, costa almost straight, apex rectangular, termen very little oblique, rounded beneath; whitish-grey; markings black or blackish-fuscous; an interupted double angled line near base; a similar line at ¼, connecting with median band in disc; a broad median band (its posterior margin indistinctly serrate) enclosing orbicular; orbicular well-defined, grey, suboval; reniform rather small but of normal shape; a subterminal band, broadly interrupted above and below middle; a series of semicircular dots round termen: fringes greyish-brown with some white scales. Hindwings fuscous: fringes fuscous, apical half white.

The form of the palpi shows this species to be allied to the longstaffi group, but it is a larger and more definitely marked insect.

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Mount Arthur Tableland in January. A single female taken at night at an elevation of about 4500 ft. Type in coll. Cawthrou Institute.

Anomis sabulifera Guen., Noct., vol. 2, p. 404.

A single specimen of this well-known and widely spread species came to a lighted window in Nelson about the middle of March last. Dr. A. J. Turner informs me that it occurs in most parts of Australia. It is also known from the Malay Archipelago, India, and Africa.

Cosmophila flava (Fabr.), Syst. Ent., p. 601 (1775).

In 1910 Mr. W. G. Howes took a male specimen of this Australian moth in Wellington. This he kindly gave to the writer, but it was not recorded as there was a doubt as to whether it had been reared from imported material or taken in the field. It now appears that Mr. E. S. West, of Napier, captured a female of the same species at Otahuhu, Auckland, in January, 1907, and through the kindness of Mr. G. V. Hudson I have been able to examine this example. In all probability both these specimens were accidentally introduced, and as it is fifteen years since the last specimen was taken it is unlikely that the species has become established.

Mocis alterna Walk., Cat. Het., vol. 15, p. 1833.

This also is a familiar Australian insect, with a range to New Guinea, China, and Japan. Dr. Turner gives the Australian distribution as North Australia, North West Australia and Queensland. On 26th February, 1925, a specimen, in rather worn condition, was attracted to the lights at the Cawthron Institute.


Chloroclystis heighwayi n. sp.

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♂. 23–24 mm. Head, thorax and abdomen greyish-pink mixed with fuscous and black. Palpi 2, fuscous-grey with some white scales above. Antennae fasciculate-ciliate, greyish-pink annulated with fuscous basally, ciliations 3½. Legs ochreous-grey, densely irrorated with fuscous, tarsi annulated with ochreous-grey. Forewings triangular, costa slightly arched basally, subsinuate at middle, apex round-pointed, termen slightly bowed; pinkish-grey densely irrorated with fuscous; veins blackish; a series of very obscure darker irregular transverse lines, here and there margined with whitish, more pronounced at ¼, before ½, and 2/3; an indistinct serrate subterminal line, interrupted above dorsum; a black line round termen: fringes pinkish-grey with median white line and indications of dark bars. Hindwings, termen moderate, sinuate below apex and above tornus leaving a broad blunt median projection; colour as in forewings but markings still more obscure; a dark discal dot: fringes as in forewings.

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A most obscure and difficult form to describe satisfactorily. Near C. bilineolata Walk., but without the green tinge and definite markings of that species.

Pukeatua Bush, Port Hills, Canterbury. Nine males taken by Messrs. W. Heighway and S. Lindsay during the last week of September. Type and paratypes in coll. W. Heighway; two paratypes in coll. S. Lindsay.


Selidosema campbelli n. sp.

♀ 45 mm. Head smoke grey, ochreous behind, frons purplish-fuscous. Palpi purplish-fuscous, ochreous beneath. Antennae, shaft ochreous, pectinations black, 3 ½. (The pectinations appear to be much shorter than they are owing to their acute angulation with the shaft). Thorax (denuded). Abdomen greyish-ochreous. Legs ochreous, anterior pair infuscated and tarsi broadly banded with fuscous. Forewings elongate-triangular, costa moderately and uniformly arched, apex obtuse, termen bowed; basal fifth ochreous sprinkled with fuscous; a broad median band of fuscous-black mixed with ochreous, its anterior margin almost straight, its posterior margin with a broad blunt median projection; following the median band a broad area of white, slightly tinged with ochreous and traversed by a number of short fuscous strigae from costa; termen broadly fuscous, more narrowly towards tornus: fringes fuscous mixed with ochreous. Hind-wings bright ochreous sprinkled with fuscous on basal and dorsal areas: fringes ochreous mixed with fuscous, clear ochreous round apex.

Not closely related to any other New Zealand species of the genus. As far as I am aware, pectinated antennae in the female are found in one other species only, S. dejectaria (Walk.).

Blackball, Westland. The unique specimen was taken in December by Mr. J. W. Campbell who very kindly presented it to the Cawthron Institute.


Carposina maculosa n. sp.

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♂ ♀ 18 mm. Head, antennae and thorax light buff. Palpi light buff mixed with ochreous on lower half externally. Abdomen ochreous-white. Legs ochreous-white, anterior and middle parts infuscated. Forewings moderate, costa moderately arched at base, thence straight, apex subacute, termen straight, oblique; light buff finely irrorated with pale fuscous; markings fuscous-black; a dot beneath costa near base and a similar one obliquely before it above dorsum; a minute dot beneath costa at ¼ and a much larger one beneath it below fold; a dot in disc beyond these; a dot beneath costa and two below it in disc before ½; a small dot beneath costa between these and ¾; two or three dots touching each other and forming a short transverse striga at ¾; an obscure irregular striga from costa at 4/5 to tornus; a series round termen: fringes whitish-buff. Hindwings and fringes shining white.

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The series of distinct dots which forms the markings of this species easily separates it from other members of the genus. The ground colour is also distinctive, though C. charaxias Meyr. approaches it in this respect,

Hoon Hay Bush and Cooper's Knobs, Port Hills, Canterbury. The first specimen was taken by Mr. S. Lindsay in 1923 and subsequently several others were taken by Messrs. Lindsay and Heighway. Holotype (♂), Allotype (♀) and several paratypes in coll. W. Heighway.


Phthorimaea quieta n. sp.

♂ ♀ 10–12 mm. Head, antennae and thorax grey. Palpi grey, second segment infuscated externally and apical segment with suffused subapical fuscous ring. Abdomen brown, segmental divisions whitish-grey. Legs fuscous, tibiae and tarsi annulated with ochreous-white. Forewings long, costa hardly arched, apex rounded, termen very oblique; greyish-white densely irrorated with fuscous and with a few ochreous scales; the fuscous irroration tends to form a series of obscure markings as follows:—an outwardly oblique fascia near base, reaching to fold; a similar fascia at about ¼; a large semioval suffused blotch on middle third of costa; two or three suffused fasciae on apical ¼: fringes pale fuscous-grey dotted with dark fuscous. Hindwings pale greyish-fuscous: fringes pale fuscous-grey tinged with ochreous.

Near P. thyraula Meyr. but I think quite distinct.

Bottle Lake, Christchurch. Mr. S. Lindsay took several in October and February. Holotype (♂), allotype (♀) and two paratypes in coll. S. Lindsay.


Borkhausenia marcida n. sp.

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♂ ♀ 15–17 mm. Head, palpi and thorax brownish-grey. Antennae brown annulated with grey, ciliations in ♂ 1. Abdomen bronzy, mixed with grey basally, segmental divisions grey. Legs brown mixed with grey. Forewings moderate, costa moderately arched, apex rounded, termen very oblique; white, densely irrorated with pale bronzy-brownish; markings sometimes entirely absent but usually a spot of paler or brighter bronzy brown beneath fold at ⅓ and a similar spot in disc at 2/3, a spot on costa at 4/5 and another on tornus; dorsal spots margined posteriorly with white: fringes concolorous with wing, tips darker. Hindwings pale greyish-fuscous: fringes fuscous-grey with dark basal line.

A very obscure member of the brachyacma group. The frequent absence of markings makes its identification difficult but there are good genitalia characters.

Bottle Lake, Christchurch; Governor's Bay and Mount Grey. Collected by Mr. S. Lindsay in September and October. Holotype (♂), allotype (♀) and several paratypes in coll. S. Lindsay.

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Borkhausenia paula n. sp.

♂. 11–12 mm. Head, palpi and thorax pale ivory-yellow. Antennae fuscous with pale dots, ciliations slightly more than 1. Abdomen dark purplish-grey. Legs ochreous-whitish mixed with pale brown. Forewings blunt lanceolate, costa moderately arched, apex round-pointed, termen very oblique; pale ivory-yellow; extreme edge of costa near base fuscous; fringes concolorous with wing. Hindwings dark fuscous: fringes greyish-fuscous: fringes greyish-fuscous with darker basal line.

Picture icon

Fig 1.—Borkhausenia paula n. sp. a, male genitalia, lateral view; b, harpes, from within.
Fig 2.—Borkhausenia marcida n. sp. a, male genitalia, lateral view; b, harpes, from within; c, harpes, ventral view.

A very small and inconspicuous species. Near B. maranta Meyr. but with less pointed forewings.

Pukeatua Bush, Port Hills, Canterbury. Two males taken by Mr. S. Lindsay in November. Type and paratype in coll. S. Lindsay.

Gymobathra caliginosa n. sp.

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♂ 16–18 mm. Head ochreous-whitish-brown. Palpi and antennae ochreous-white, densely mixed with fuscous-black, antennal ciliations extremely short. Thorax brown. Abdomen brassy-brown, segmental divisions slate-brown, anal tuft ochreous. Legs fuscous, hair of posterior tibiae ochreous, tarsi annulated with whitish-ochreous. Forewings rather long, costa moderately arched, apex obtuse, termen rounded, little oblique; pale brown, more or less mixed with blackish-fuscous: markings very obscure; blackish-fuscous; first discal spot at ⅓ plical obliquely beyond first discal and connected with it by a bar: second discal at about ½; sometimes an obscure, interrupted, transverse line at 2/3; a very obscure whitish subterminal line, sometimes absent; fringes ochreous with two brown bands. Hind-wings fuscous-grey: fringes ochreous with brown basal line.

In one example the forewing is strongly suffused with ochreous, especially along costa. Related to G. cenchrias (Meyr.) but a darker and more obscure form. The genitalia of the male offer good distinguishing characters, and the antennal ciliations are shorter.

Cooper's Knobs, Port Hills, Canterbury. Four males taken by Mr. S. Lindsay in November. Holotype (♂) and two paratypes in coll. S. Lindsay and one paratype in coll. W. Heighway.

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Tinea lindsayi n. sp.

♂ 11 mm. Head dark bronzy-brown, frons white. Maxillary palpi white. Labial palpi bronzy-brown, terminal segment white. Antennae grey annulated with black. Thorax and abdomen dark purplish-fuscous. Legs greyish-fuscous, tarsi annulated with ochreous-white. Forewings elongate, parallel-sided, costa slightly arched, apex obtuse, termen straight, oblique; leaden-grey; numerous transverse irregular fuscous-black fasciae; space between fasciae, particularly on apical half, filled with bright bronzy-brown: fringes fuscous with a mixed bronzy and dark fuscous basal line. Hindwings dark purplish-fuscous: fringes dark greyish-fuscous.

The white frons is sufficient to distinguish the species from any other Tinea. It is possible that it is not correctly assigned to Tinea, but only one example was available for examination.

Mount Grey. A single male taken by Mr. S. Lindsay, in whose collection the type remains.

Mallobathra fragilis n. sp.

♂ 9–10 mm. Head and thorax light bronzy-fuscous. Palpi whitish. Antennae whitish-grey, ciliations slightly over 1. Abdomen dark bronzy-fuscous. Legs greyish-fuscous. Forewings long, narrow, costa hardly arched, apex rounded, very oblique; whitish-grey irrorated with pale fuscous; a dark fuscous margining on costa from base to ¼; a dark fuscous spot on costa at ½; a similar spot on costa at about ¾; three or four oblique fuscous fasciae from costa to termen on epical fifth: fringes grey. Hindwings and fringes pale fuscous grey.

Resembles M. araneosa Meyr. but is considerably larger than that species.

Dean's Bush, Riccarton, Christchurch. Two males secured by Mr. S. Lindsay in October. A third male was taken, also in October, by the writer on the Dun Mountain track at about 2,000 ft. Type and paratype in coll. S. Lindsay; paratype in coll. Cawthron Institute.


Xyleutis boisduvali Roths., Novit. Zool., 1896, p. 232.

A female specimen of this huge species, probably the heaviest moth in the world, was taken at Spring Grove, Nelson, in February, 1925. It had emerged from one of the Australian hardwood poles used by the Telegraph Department. Several of the smaller species, X. eucalypti Boisd., have been reported from various parts of the Dominion during the last few years, and it is probably only a matter of time before one or more Cossids become established in the country.

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Porina leonina n. sp.

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♂ 63 mm. Head tawny. Antennae dull orange, strongly bipectinated. Palpi dark brown, apex tawny. Thorax rather dark brown with an anterior pale bar. Abdomen dull brown. Legs tawny. Forewings moderate, broad, apex broadly rounded, termen bowed, oblique; rich dark brown with some blotches of fuscous-black; a series of short irregular white strigulae beneath costa from base to 2/3; on dorsal fourth, from middle to margin, several ver-miculate white markings; a white-margined dark dot on dorsum at ⅓; a tawny band, margined with whitish before and behind, from costa at ¾ to dorsum before tornus: an indistinct subterminal line enclosing some dark dots: fringes tawny barred with fuscous-black. Hindwings tawny: fringes as in forewings.

Belongs to the group with strongly bipectinated antennae but is easily distinguished from its allies.

Salisbury's Opening, Mount Arthur Tableland, at about 4,000 ft. The unique specimen was taken on 4th April. Type in coll Cawthron Institute.

Mnesarchaea fallax n.sp.

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♂ 10 mm. Head, palpi and antennae bronzy-brown. Thorax and abdomen purplish-brown. Legs greyish-fuscous. Forewings lanceolate, costa moderately arched; bronzy-brown; a white triangular spot with a few white scales above it on tornus; a few white scales beneath costa at 4/5 and along termen: fringes bronzy-brown. white on tornus. Hindwings fuscous with purplish-violet sheen apically: fringes greyish-fuscous.

Superficially like M. fusca Philp, but a larger species. Figures of the male genitalia are given elsewhere in this volume.

Mount Arthur Tableland. Two males in December at an elevation of 4,500 ft. Type in coll. Cawthron Institute.