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Chadisra Walker

Chadisra luzonensis Kiriakoff  
Chadisra luzonensis
Kiriakoff, 1970: 121.
Chadisra bipars Walker, sensu Holloway 1976: 58, fig. 378.

Chadisra luzonensis (Java)

Chadisra luzonensis

Chadisra luzonensis

The male forewings are dark greenish brown (faded specimens can be buff), slightly darker in the basal zone; a fresh Javan male is illustrated, the only Bornean specimen being worn. The hindwings are pale brown with a small subtornal chevron. The male genitalia are distinguished by the broad, rather spatulate uncal processes, the sclerotised ventral processes to the valves and the three-angled apex to the aedeagus.

In the female the forewings have the exterior half varying from fawn to grey, the basal zone from pale rufous-fawn to dark brown. The small size of the subtornal chevron of the hindwing and the two subapical flecks on the forewing distinguish this species from basivacua in the female, and the paleness of the hindwings distinguishes it from borneensis. In the genitalia the ostium bursae is very broad, narrowing abruptly into the short, sclerotised ductus, though extending anteriorly with two small lateral lobes.

Taxonomic notes. The older name calapana Semper may be applicable to this species though Kiriakoff associates it with the next. It has not been possible to examine the type.

This species and the next two are all placed in the genus Chadisra Walker sensu lato, though Kiriakoff (1968) erected several new genera for species of the complex. Though the wing markings are relatively similar throughout the complex, the structures of male and female genitalia are diverse. Unfortunately the definition of the genera by Kiriakoff leaves a lot to be desired, as demonstrated in this note and that for the next species.

The type species of Chadisra is bipars Walker, for which Kiriakoff designated a neotype female from N. India. It is likely that var. albobrunnea Rothschild (N. E. Himalaya), placed as a synonym of bipars by Kiriakoff, is distinct but the type is also female. A single worn male from Nepal, taken in 1982 by Lt. Col. M. G. Allen, is the only Himalayan Chadisra of that sex in the BMNH; it probably associates with either bipars or albobrunnea and is the sister species of borneensis.

The male characteristics attributed to bipars by Kiriakoff (1968) are those of a distinct but undescribed S. Indian species with female genitalia (BM notodontid slide 1114) very different from those of bipars: the ventral margin of the ostium bursae is acutely produced, set between lateral pouches in the lamella vaginalis. This species has the forewing submarginal made up of transverse striae in the spaces, almost contiguous over the anterior half, distinguishing it from Trincomala semiferrea Hampson which flies in S. India and Sri Lanka and has a more punctate submarginal. T. semiferrea is a junior synonym (syn. n.) of Pheosia basalis Moore, placed erroneously as a synonym of bipars by Kiriakoff (1968). The type of basalis cannot be located, therefore a male specimen labelled  P. basalis, CEYLON (E.E. Green), BM 1961: 410, BM notodontid slide 1105' and resembling the original illustration in Moore's description is hereby designated NEOTYPE. The species therefore becomes Chadisra (Trincomala) basalis Moore.

Geographical range. Philippines, Borneo, Jaya.

Habitat preference. The few Bornean specimens have been taken mainly in the lowlands and all in open agricultural or secondary forested habitats.

Biology. Both Chadisra basalis and the undescribed S. Indian species mentioned above have been reared by T. R. Bell (MS); they are perhaps the species most closely related to luzonensis.

The undescribed species has a cylindrical larva, stoutest centrally, with the eighth abdominal segment swollen into a round-topped cone. The claspers and prolegs are pinkish, the true legs watery green. The head is large, smooth, glossy, semi-elliptical, the base broader than the vertex, brownish pink with brown spots; a jet black line divides the cheeks from the face. The body is canary yellow with a double, thin, dark dorsal line, centred with reddish purple, with oblique lines running forwards down the sides to meet the spiracles on all abdominal segments, the angle formed with the dorsal line by these oblique lines being filled at the apex with reddish purple, broadly so on segment 7; the underside is green, grading pinkish laterally. Variants had (a) a general suffusion of brownish rose with black dorsal and oblique lines and (b) a dorsal line of chocolate brown with a pink centre.

Bell described a greenish white larva with a yellow dorsal line bordered by thin blue-green lateral lines and green oblique lines; the cone on the eighth segment is yellow or deep rose-pink. This matches the illustration of the larva of basalis in Moore's original description. Gardner (1946) attributed a green larva with a crimson bordered yellow dorsal stripe to bipars. It was recorded in Dehra Dun in S. India so may also have been basalis.

Host-plants from several families have been recorded: Bombax (Bombacaceae), Grewia (Tiliaceae), Sideroxylon (Sapotaceae), Trema (Ulmaceae), Xylia (Leguminosae). The African relative Achrasiella curvilinea Swinhoe also feeds on Trema and Grewia (Pinhey 1975).

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