SUBFAMILY ARIOLICINI
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Paracrama dulcissima Walker
Nolasena dulcissima Walker, [1863]1864, J. Linn. Soc. (Zool.), 7: 76.
Paracrama
rectomarginata Hampson, 1891, Illust. typical Specimens lepid. Heterocera Colln Br. Mus., 8: 46.
Paracrama dulcissima ab. aurea Strand, 1917, Arch. Naturgesch., 82 (A1): 90.
Paracrama dulcissima ab.
flammans Strand, 1917, Arch. Naturgesch., 82 (A1): 90.
Paracrama dulcissima aurea Gaede and flammans Gaede, 1937, Gross-Schmett. Erde, 11: 425.
Paracrama dulcissima Walker; Kobes, 1997: 18.

 


Paracrama dulcissima

Paracrama dulcissima



Diagnosis.
This and the next species have similar, largely green forewings with red and grey borders, and pale or deeper orange-red hindwings. In dulcissima the forewing border is of even width rather than centrally excavate, and the hindwings in the male are deep orange-red. In the female and in both sexes of the next species the hindwings are whitish, grading pale red towards the margin.

Geographical range. Indo-Australian tropics east to the Bismarck Is., but not Australia.

Habitat preference. No material has been taken in recent surveys. The type material was from Sarawak, probably in the lowlands and there is material from near Pontianak in the lowlands of Kalimantan.

Biology. Bell (MS) described the life history of a mixture of this and the next species in India, but it is not possible to assign the different descriptions with confidence. Bellís material includes both dulcissima and latimargo under his number 451, so it is possible these two descriptions represent the two species.

The larva is somewhat claviform in shape, smooth, without protuberances except two small conical ones on a transverse ridge across the dorsum of A8. T3 and A4 are tumid, somewhat as in Maurilia, then the abdomen tapers away posteriorly. All prolegs are present, and primary setae only. The colour is yellowish white, marbled profusely with brown, the white being more apparent chiefly as a saddle on the posterior half of A4 and anterior half of A5, and as a dorsal spot between the black pinacula of A2. Such pinacula are also present on the thoracic segments, with dorsal white spots on T2 and T3. The venter is leaden-white.

Another variant is dark, smoky olive-green, marbled sparsely with lighter lines: the body is distinctly lighter from the posterior half of A3 behind a diagonal line running forwards from spiracle to dorsum. This pale zone is yellowish white in the spiracular region. There is an irregular subdorsal line extending back to the tubercles on A8 which are black. There is a large black patch on A3, bordered behind by white ground colour. The venter is blue-greenish white. Each setal base is black with a white annulus.

The pupa is ovoid, with A10 a mushroom-like cap without cremastral hooks but with the anterior margin of the cremastral area ridged and beaded. It is enclosed in a darkish brown, tough, shiny, slightly mottled cocoon, a truncated semiovoid, peaked anteriorly over the vertical emergence slit.

The host-plant recorded was Grewia (Tiliaceae).

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