Guenée, 1852, Hist. nat. Insectes, Spec. gen. Lepid.
Guenée, Gaede, 1937; Holloway, 1976: 16.
Diagnosis. The forewing lacks a subtornal whitish area as do simplex and meeki
but differs from those species in the more angled fasciation and, from simplex,
in the absence of paler rufous markings. The dark border to the hindwing is
relatively narrow. The male genitalia, illustrated by Holloway (1979), are
distinctive with the aedeagus vesica branched into four narrow lobes, two of
which bear a terminal cornutus.
Geographical range. The species is found throughout the Indo-Australian
tropics, and has been introduced to Hawaii.
Habitat preference. Despite its pest status (see below) the species has
been taken only rarely in recent light-trap surveys, from localities above 1000m
on G. Kinabalu, G. Api in the Mulu National Park, and on Bukit Retak in Brunei.
Biology. The host range is wide, the species being a noted pest of mango (Mangifera)
as well as feeding on Anacardium and Schinus in the same
family, Anacardiaceae, and on Terminalia (Combretaceae) and other
dicotyledonous trees (Sevastopulo 1941; Gardner 1948a; Browne 1968; Pholboon
1965; Robinson 1975; Beardsley 1982; Bell MS).
Semper (1896-1902) illustrated the larva of Philippines jocosatrix as a
spindle-shaped larva, the pale grey ground blotched with black and brown. Bell
(MS) provided a more detailed description (Indian larva) as in the precis
All prolegs are present. The larva is stout, almost twice as wide
centrally as at each end, smooth, green with small plum-coloured blotches, and
with the hair tubercles showing as small plum-coloured dots. The head is also
green with moderate plum-coloured spots. The larva measures 13mm by 5mm when
The larvae live amongst the flowers of mango, eating voraciously or
lying full length along the flower stalks. They turn pinkish brown prior to
pupation in the soil.
Bell also reared P. nugatrix, an Indian species, mainly from Buchanania
(Anacardiaceae) but also from mango. The larva is whitish green with thin
skin; every hair tubercle is on a large jet black circular spot the diameter of
a spiracle length or more. Each spiracle is ringed. Larvae feed on young leaves,
resting on the undersides. Pupation is in the soil in a slight silken cocoon
incorporating particles of earth. Mathur (1942) and Browne (1968) record Morus
(Moraceae), Terminalia (Combretaceae) and Mucuna (Leguminosae)
as host-plants for nugatrix.
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