Giaura multipunctata Swinhoe, 1919, Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (9), 4: 119.
Swinhoe, 1890, Trans. ent. Soc. London, 1890: 236, praeocc. in Giaura by
Lucas (Poole, 1989, and see below).
Diagnosis. The species has the appearance of a small brown-grey Characoma,
the forewing appearing slightly chequered, with fine dark brown fasciae. The
forewing is particularly distinguished by an array of small black dots: three in
an oblique row subbasally; one rather elongate one medially; submarginal and
marginal rows in the tornal area.
Tymbal organs are present, but not of the same
structure as in leucophaea, whilst being of the elongate general
sarrothripine type (Fig. 129). In the male genitalia, the black-scaled processes
are very much longer than the valves, strongly curved, with the scales
restricted to the apex. The bursa of the female is finely scobinate throughout,
and the ductus has a sclerotised colliculum over its basal third. The species is
Swinhoe (Indian Subregion, Java, Bali, Sulawesi, Timor), which is greyer, with
more angular fasciae and less prominent dark dots. In sceptica tymbal
organs are lacking and the male genitalia have the patch of black scales on a
more extensive apical limb of the valve process, the limb defined by a distinct
dorsal lobe basal to it.
Rothschild comb. n. (Bismarcks, New Guinea), though originally described
in the Lithosiinae, is a further member of the group, a greyer version of
multipunctata. It may be a synonym of
Lucas from Queensland. A specimen from Sulawesi is also referable to this
Geographical range. Indian Subregion, Burma, China, Peninsular Malaysia,
Habitat preference. The species is uncommon in montane forest, four
specimens being taken between 1000m and 1790m during the Mulu survey, singly at
1465m on Bukit Retak and 1670m on Bukit Pagon in Brunei, and at about 600m on
G. Trus Madi. One specimen has been taken at about 150m at Brumas in the
lowlands of Sabah.
Biology. Bell (MS) reared the related G. sceptica in India. The larva
is cylindrical with all prolegs present. The head is round, very slightly
bilobed dorsally, a dull yellow-white. The body is smooth with primary setae set
on minute tubercles. It is a light green colour with a fine marbling of curved
and angled lines of white except in dorsal and lateral longitudinal bands.
The larvae feed exclusively on young leaves or flower buds, and are found most
commonly when the host plant is in flush. They lie in a web spun over, and loose
from, the surface of a leaf, or in a silken tent spun between leaves. They are
secretive and have a capacity unusual amongst Macrolepidoptera to move in
reverse as well as forward.
The greenish orange pupa terminates in a conical cap with no cremaster but with
the anterior margin beaded with ridges. It is enclosed in a long, ovoid cocoon,
densely woven from light yellow silk and incorporating few extraneous fragments.
The host plant recorded by Bell was Grewia (Tiliaceae).
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