SUBFAMILY ARIOLICINI
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Plagiograpta macrodonta Hampson
Plagiograpta macrodonta Hampson, 1907, J. Bombay nat. Hist. Soc., 17: 657.

 


Plagiograpta macrodonta



Diagnosis.
This and the next two species have elongate grey forewings with a longitudinal white streak subcostally. Those of macrodonta and
gertae sp. n. are distinguished by further fine white tracery posterior to this streak, and are best distinguished from each other by features of the male abdomen (see below).

Taxonomic note. Material with similar facies from Borneo (see next species), Sulawesi (slide 17409) and New Guinea and adjacent islands (slide 17407) proved to represent three distinct species that share possession of a pair of coremata in the vicinity of A5 of the male; these are much more prominent in the Sulawesi species.

Geographical range. Indian Subregion, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo.

Habitat preference. This is an uncommon, mainly montane species, recorded over an altitude range of 900m to 2360m.

Biology. The early stages were described in India by Bell (MS), and Gardner (1948a) gave details of head morphology and chaetotaxy. The larva is cylindrical, three times as long as broad, slightly broader at segments T3 and A1. The surface of the body is smooth, with primary setae only, mostly inconspicuous. The colour of the final instar is grey, speckled with brownish pink, and blotched with the same dorsally on T2, A8 and A9, and extensively over the front of T3. Segments A3-5 are sometimes completely this colour. Earlier instars are light green to whitish.

The pupa is somewhat ovoid, narrower posteriorly, where it terminates in a blunt cone without a cremaster. The cocoon of white silk is a truncated semiovoid, peaked anteriorly with a vertical wall in which occurs the emergence slit. The posterior end tapers away in a short tail of silk on the leaf surface where it is spun.

The larvae live on the undersides of young leaves, joining the edges completely from tip to base, living inside to eat the epidermis. When a leaf is exhausted, each larva proceeds to another leaf by eating its way out by the stalk, leaving the old leaf containing all the frass.

The hostplant was Lophopetalum (Celastraceae).

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