Type species: cervicalis Walker,
Stonia Walker (type species bipars Walker, Australia).
This genus has been treated
by Nielsen et al. (1996) in a much more restricted sense than in the past
(e.g. Hampson, 1900), with the bulk of the old concept of the genus being
assigned to Lyclene Moore. This approach is followed partially here,
though the genera Adites Moore and Barsine Walker (with several
synonyms that were included under Lyclene by Nielsen et al.) are
also treated as distinct. These revised generic concepts also overlap to some
extent with the old one (e.g. Hampson, 1900) for Miltochrista Hübner.
Genus group names that were treated as synonyms of Asura or Miltochrista
that probably also represent distinct taxa include Gurna Swinhoe
(type species indica Moore, India), Sesapa Walker (type species inscripta
Walker, China) and Tumicla Wallengren (type species sagenaria Wallengren,
now be restricted to an Australian group of moderate-sized species with
forewings boldly banded in black and yellow. There are also genitalic features
that could help define the genus: the male has reduced to vestigial abdominal
coremata, a rather sinuous costa to the valve that has a vestigial but usually
recognisable central process, and a valve apex simply divided into a lobe of the
lamina without a distinct costal projection, and a tapering saccular process.
The saccus is often acute. The anellus may (Stonia) have a lateral pair
of spine clusters as in some Barsine (see Barsine
Walker Gen. rev.), but the aedeagus vesica is
distinguished by clusters of moderate but slender spines on several lobes. The
female genitalia have a wide ostium and elongate ductus as in Barsine.
Some or all of these
features are seen in other Australian taxa with similar facies, e.g. typical Eutane
Walker (see Eutane Walker), or with more Barsine-like facies such as Gymnasura
Hampson (type species saginaea Turner, Queensland), so investigation
of these in more detail may reveal a natural grouping. There is one Bornean
species that has similar genitalic features but very different facies, and this
is therefore tentatively retained in Asura.
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