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Bracca Hübner

Type species: bajularia Clerck, Moluccas.

Synonyms: Cosmethis Hübner (type species barbara Stoll, Ambon); Duga Walker (type species pinguis Walker, Ambon); Arycanda Walker (type species maculosa Walker); Panaethia Guenée (type species georgiata Guenée); Tigridoptera Herrich-Schäffer (type species exul Herrich-Schäffer, Java).

A full account and cladistic analysis of this genus may be found in Holloway (1991), with some preliminary observations in Holloway (1984b).

The male antennae are ciliate. The forewing has a fovea and there is no setal comb on the third sternite. The species included exhibit a range of facies features: those from Borneo have a series of broken transverse black fasciae on a dull, pale blue ground, but others include dull orange streaks, yellow hindwings and extensive white areas. The abdomen is usually at least partially dull, pale orange. The blue and black pattern is seen also in Craspedosis Butler (See Craspedosis Butler), the geometrine genus Dysphania Hübner and the agaristine noctuid genus Longicella Jordan.

The genus is most clearly defined on genitalic and other abdominal features. The males of all except a subgroup endemic to New Guinea have bifurcate coremata between sternites 6, 7 and 8. The valve costa has a strong central lobe bearing hair setae. The transverse band of sclerotisation between this and the sacculus has a complex pair of lobes, and there is often further ornamentation at the distal end of the sacculus. The exterior of the base of the valve often bears a narrow corema. The uncus is frequently bifid.

The female genitalia have complex sclerotisation of the sterigma, but most species have a sclerotised band in the bursa as well as the usual dentate, mushroom-like signum. This band bears transverse ridges of small spines and can be longitudinal or form a ring round the base of the bursa.

The larvae of one of the Australasian species (B. rotundata Butler) are strikingly marked, mainly black, with orange rings and white patches. There were no associated host data.

The genus is most diverse in tropical Australasia and Sulawesi. There are three species in Borneo. The genus does not appear to extend further into mainland Asia than the extreme south of Thailand, near the Malaysian border.

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