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Arctornis marginata Moore comb. n.
Cobanilla marginata Moore, 1883, Lep. Ceylon, 2:121.
Topomesa discolor Hampson, 1896, Fauna Br. India, Moths, 4: 490.
Topomesa lerwa Swinhoe, 1899, Ann. Mag. nat. Hist., (7), 3:111.
Cobanilla phaedra Collenette, 1932, Novit. zool., 38: 81.
Cobanilla marginata melinau Holloway, 1982: 228.

Arctornis marginata

Arctornis marginata

The wings are pale dull orange, with suffusion of reddish scales, particularly at the fringes, in the discal spot and medially on the forewing. Females are more heavily suffused medially and have the forewings strongly bifalcate rather than merely falcate as in the male.

Taxonomic note. The species was reviewed by Holloway (1982b). The Bornean subspecies, melinau, is distinguished by conspicuous setae at the apex of the valve harpe.

Geographical range. Sri Lanka, India; Peninsular Malaysia, S. Burma, Sumatra (ssp. phaedra); Borneo (ssp. melinau).

Habitat preference. This is a scarce species, only taken in lowland forest, including heath and swamp forest.

Biology. The early stages in India have been described by T.R.D. Bell (MS). The head is orange. The setae on the verrucae are whitish and black, slightly plumose. They are longer and more plumose on the thoracic segments, directed forwards. Similarly long but less plumose setae are directed backwards from A8 and A9. Early instars are strongly variegated, but the mature larva is black, marbled and netted with grey and white; there is a broken, rudimentary lateral row of orange marks.

The larvae lie on the under-surface of the preferred younger leaves of their host-plant. They rest with their bodies flexed laterally, and sometimes spin a silken shelter in the leaves.

The pupa is grass-green, pitted with reddish brown, and lineated and spotted with white. The secondary setae are sparse. The pupa is suspended by its dark, rose-red cremaster in a cradle of fine, almost invisible silk threads. Development from egg to adult takes four to five weeks.

The host-plant, as for A. rutila (See Arctornis rutila Fabricius comb.n), was Diospyros (Ebenaceae).

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