Type species: lignifera Walker, Borneo.
Synonym: Cyphotopsyche Hampson (type species ustipennis Hampson,
This genus was reviewed by Inoue (1996) to include the type species and
Hampson, though it was originally treated as distinct by Poole (1989). It was
placed with Roeselia Hübner by Hampson (1900), but was associated with
Proneca within it by the sharing of modified tegulae that form a hood over the head. The forewing has a ligneous brown pattern of longitudinal streaking. The hindwing has quadrifine
venation, though M3 and CuA1 are stalked, and the forewing venation is complete,
branching as in
The Budapest group has discovered that lignifera sensu Inoue represents a
complex of species ranging through the Indo-Australian tropics to the Solomons,
and it is possible that
Rothschild (New Guinea; described in Chionaema) represents a good species
rather than being a synonym of lignifera.
In the male abdomen, apodemes are on the eighth tergite only, slender and widely
separated. The uncus is short, broad, sometimes bifid. The tegumen and vinculum
are robust, wide at their point of junction. The valves are similarly robust,
with dorsal and ventral hooked processes at their central point, and there is a
more slender, angled, hooked process arising basally from the valve costa. The
aedeagus is short, slight, and the saccus is not developed.
In the female (Fig 27, species from Seram), the ovipositor lobes together are
rather conical. The eight segment is broad and robust. The ductus bursae is
long, slender, unsclerotised, expanding into a similarly unsclerotised corpus
bursae that contains two tongue-like, invaginated signa and gives rise to a much
smaller pyriform appendix bursae.
The species complex has been reared at the extremes of its range by Hampson
(1900; ex Dudgeon), Gardner (1943), Bell (MS), Piepers & Snellen (1904), Bigger
(1988) and see also Inoue (1996), the last two sources but one illustrating the
larva. It is snowy white, with the tufts of setae on verrucae also incorporating
fluff of the same colour. The body beneath this white pelt is pale green, and
there are a few black marks or setae on the thorax. The head is round, shiny,
smooth, marked reddish brown and translucent white. Previous head capsules are
stacked in a tapering horn on the prothorax and may number as many as six.
The eggs are laid in batches, and the larvae are gregarious, feeding on the
undersides of leaves and resting there, usually in a curled posture. Pupation is
in an untidy brown cocoon that incorporates the body hairs, head capsules and
particles of bark. The cocoons are strung along the undersides of twigs and leaf
midribs (Bigger, 1988).
The host plants are species
of Terminalia (Combretaceae). Bigger also recorded Terminalia as
host of a head-capsule stacking species in the
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