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Phlogophora Treitschke

Type species: meticulosa Linnaeus, Palaearctic.

Synonyms:. Brotolomia Lederer, Racoptera Scott, Solenoptera Duponchel (praeocc.) (type species meticulosa); Chutapha Moore (type species costalis Moore, India); Habryntis Lederer (type species scita Hubner, Europe); Mesolomia Smith (type species iris Guenee, N. America); Oroplexia Hampson syn. n. (type species decorata Moore, Himalaya); Madeuplexia Viette syn. n. (type species pretiosa Viette, Madagascar).

A large number of tropical montane taxa that, from their shared features of male genitalia, are obviously congeneric have been described in the past indiscriminately in the genera Trachea Ochsenheimer and Euplexia Stephens. Holloway (1976) brought a number together within Euplexia and explored the limits of the group further in a later paper (Holloway, 1987). It ranges through Africa and the Indo-Australian tropics (mostly montane taxa) to temperate zones of Australia. Further taxa (in Madeuplexia) occur in the mountains of Madagascar. The genus Euplexia has as type species the Palearctic lucipara Linnaeus in which the male genitalia do not share the features of the group: the cucullus is well separate from the sacculus which has a strongly produced distal angle: the costal process is broadly triangular and underlies the harpe to fill the gap between the sacculus and cucullus.

In taxa of the group the valves are elongate, entire, with a corona on the ventral side of the apex. The costa is often bowed; the costal process is very broadly based and extends ventrally across the valve lamina as a (usually triangular) process that reaches or extends beyond the ventral margin of the valve. The harpe is a long, sometimes sinuous, often spine-like process that lies over the costal process and usually extends beyond the costal margin of the valve. The juxta usually has a central umbo or spine. The subscaphium is sclerotised and sometimes bears spines. The aedeagus vesica is long, with one or two cornuti or scobinate sclerotisations near the base, often on lateral lobes. The trifine scent pencils are well developed at the base of the abdomen, and interior to the apodemes of the basal sternite is often a pair of thin, rather leaf-like flaps (groups B and C below).

In the female genitalia there is a strong appendix bursae, and the ductus can be expanded into a broad pocket at the ostium (strong in meticulosa and contrasta, weak in emphanes). Four band-like signa are present in contrasta and emphanes but not in meticulosa. These features serve to bring all this group into Phlogophora, though within it there is scope for subdivision based on variation on the general theme. For example, a number of groupings can be recognised in the Bornean species:

A. Black and white species with two patches of scobination rather than cornuti at the base of the aedeagus vesica; the juxta has a short to medium scobinate ampulla. (nigroplumbea Warren, styx Holloway).

B. Species with the process on the juxta broad, triangular, scobinate; harpe usually broad, sickle-like or sinuous; vesica with two cornuti basally (isoscelata Prout, kinabalua Holloway, muluensis sp. n, lignosa Holloway).

C. Species with the process from the juxta a long spine; harpe long and slender; vesica usually with     two basal cornuti and a distal zone of coarser scobination (discalis Warren, emphanes Prout,     triangula Holloway, magma Holloway, viridivena Holloway, contrasta Holloway).

Whilst the first group is widespread in the Oriental Region, the other two appear to be strictly Sundanian.

The biology of the type species was described by Carter (1988: 267). The larva is a polyphagous feeder on leaves and flowers, attacking many plants of economic importance.

All Bornean taxa are montane, found almost entirely above1000m.

In New Guinea there are a number of taxa, e.g. in the genus Clavipalpa Joicey & Talbot, and species in Euplexia such as aemulans Warren, with facies comparable to the Bornean Phlogophora but which lack the costal process on the valve. The aedeagus vesica has one or two dense clusters of spicules that may be homologous with the cornuti or scobinate patches in Phlogophora. The juxta has a central process as in Phlogophora. These taxa may represent an Australasian lineage within Phlogophora where the costal process has been lost.

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