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Taxonomic Paper
Larval food plants of Australian Larentiinae (Lepidoptera: Geometridae) - a review of available data
expand article info Olga Schmidt
‡ Zoologische Staatssammlung München, Munich, Germany
Open Access

Abstract

Background

In Australia, the subfamily Larentiinae (Lepidoptera: Geometridae) comprises over 45 genera with about 270 species described so far. However, life histories of the Australian larentiine moths have barely been studied.

New information

The current paper presents a list of larval food plants of 51 Australian larentiine species based on literature references, data from specimen labels and own observations. Some Australian habitats are shown. Possible relationships among the taxa based on food preference of the larvae are discussed. Additionally, a list of Australasian larentiine species from the genera occurring in Australia and their food plants is presented.

Keywords

Australasia, Australia, checklist, host plants, geometrid moths, larentiine moths

Introduction

The immature stages and biology of the Australian Larentiinae (Lepidoptera, Geometridae) have received little attention in the past and our knowledge of host plant affiliations of the Australian species is remaining scarce. Hudson (1898) was one of the first researchers who discussed food plants of New Zealand larentiine larvae. Turner (1904), Common (1966) and Common (1990) presented some details of biology and listed a few food plants of Australian Larentiinae. McFarland (1979) published an annotated list of food plants of 280 Australian geometrid moths, including 16 larentiine species, whereby four species were identified to genus. He also succeeded to rear a large number of south Australian geometrid moths and completed 72 life history studies, but only four larentiine species were included (McFarland 1988). McQuillan (1986), McQuillan et al. (1998), McQuillan (1999) and McQuillan (2004) has been studying some aspects of biology, ecology and conservation of Australian moths focusing on the Tasmanian species. Holloway (1997) presented data on food plants of Indo-Australian Larentiinae. Some data on the larvae and food plants of the species Anachloris Meyrick, Chaetolopha Warren, Scotocyma Turner and Visiana Swinhoe are given in the reviews of these genera (Schmidt 2001, Schmidt 2002, Schmidt 2005, Schmidt 2006b, Schmidt 2007, Schmidt 2013.) Descriptions of larvae and pupae are incomplete or absent. Some observations on the eggs of Australian moths have been published by McFarland (1973). The first comprehensive review of the southern Australian geometrid eggs, including 18 larentiine species was completed by Young (2006), who also reared Tasmanian larvae of Geometridae, including several Larentiinae. Craw (1986) briefly described and illustrated a few New Zealand larentiine larvae. Totally, more than 270 larentiine species referred to about 45 genera are currently described from Australia. However, life histories of the vast majority of Australian larentiine moths remain unstudied.

Materials and methods

The present report is based on literature references and personal observations. The following material has been used: Anachloris uncinata (Guenée) (Western Australia, Bremer Bay), "Chloroclystis" approximata (Walker) (New South Wales, Barren Grounds), "Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker) (Queensland, Brisbane), Epicyme rubropunctaria (Doubleday) (New South Wales, Monga State Forest), Epyaxa sodaliata (Walker) (Queensland, Severnlea), Gymnoscelis lophopus Turner (Queensland, Brisbane), Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker) (Queensland, Brisbane), Scotocyma albinotata (Walker) (Queensland, Bunya Mountains), Visiana brujata (Guenée) (Queensland, Lamington National Park), V. incertata (Walker) (Queensland, Bunya Mountains). Additionally, data were taken from labels of specimens deposited in the Australian Na­tional Insect Collection, CSIRO, Ecosystem Sciences, Canberra (ANIC).

Taxonomic affiliation for several species is questionable therefore several names are cited in quotation marks. Tribal association is only cited for the first member of the tribe in the section “Nomenclature”. In the section “Notes” the source of data on the food plants is presented. A list of Australian species of Larentiinae and their larval food plants is available under “Supplementary Materials” (see Suppl. material 1). A list of Australasian larentiine species from the genera occurring in Australia and their food plants is also presented (see Suppl. material 2).

List of the Australian Larentiinae (Geometridae) and their food plants

Epicyme rubropunctaria (Doubleday, 1843)

Nomenclature: 

Tribe Asthenini

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Feeds on: 

Geranium sp. (Geraniaceae)

Notes: 

Roberts 1979. However, a newly hatched larva refused to feed on flowers and leaves of Geranium sp. (Schmidt, unpubl. data).

Fig. 1.

Figure 1.

Epicyme rubropunctaria, female

Habitat of E. rubropunctaria is presented on Fig. 2.

Figure 2.

Habitat of Epicyme rubropunctaria, New South Wales, Monga State Forest

Epicyme rubropunctaria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Haloragis alata (Haloragaceae)

Notes: 

Hudson 1898.

Epicyme rubropunctaria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Haloragis glauca (Haloragaceae)

Notes: 

S. Williams, pers. comm., in: Marriott 2011.

Epicyme rubropunctaria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Haloragis heterophylla (Haloragaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Poecilasthena balioloma (Turner, 1907)

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Feeds on: 

Leptospermum myrtifolium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae of a New Zealand species P. schistaria (Walker, 1861) feed on Leptospermum sp. (Myrtaceae) (Hudson 1898).

Poecilasthena ischnophrica Turner, 1941

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Feeds on: 

Leptospermum myrtifolium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Poecilasthena ischnophrica Turner, 1941

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Feeds on: 

Leptospermum myrsinoides (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Macropiper excelsum (Piperaceae)

Notes: 

Hudson 1898.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Monotoca? scoparia (Epacridaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan 1986.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Monotoca glauca (Epacridaceae)

Notes: 
C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Epacris sp. (Epacridaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan 1986.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Leucopogon juniperinus (Epacridaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan 1986.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Leptospermum scoparium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 
C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Astroloma humifusum (Ericaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Captured larvae were reared.

Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843)

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Feeds on: 

Brachyloma sp. (Ericaceae)

Notes: 

Scoble 1999.

Poecilasthena xylocyma (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Leptospermum scoparium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 
ANIC label, C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

Bosara minima (Warren, 1897)

Nomenclature: 

Tribe Eupitheciini

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Feeds on: 

Glochidion ferdinandi (Euphorbiaceae)

Notes: 

Turner 1904. The plant species is described as Phyllanthus ferdinandi. An Indian larentiine species, Bosara emarginaria (Hampson, 1893) is known to feed on Breynia sp. (Euphorbiaceae) (P. Bell, pers. comm., in: Holloway 1997). The species Bosara minima was associated with the genera Chloroclystis Hübner and Gymnoscelis Mabille. The synonymy with B. refusaria Walker needs to be checked (see Holloway 1997).

"Chloroclystis" approximata (Walker, 1869)

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Feeds on: 

Malus domestica (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae occasionally damage the young fruits of apples.

Fig. 3.

Figure 3.

Chloroclystis approximata, female

Habitat of C. approximata is presented on Fig. 4.

Figure 4.

Habitat of "Chloroclystis" approximata, New South Wales, Barren Grounds

"Chloroclystis" approximata (Walker, 1869)

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Feeds on: 

Prunus avium (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae occasionally damage the young fruits of cherries.

"Chloroclystis" approximata (Walker, 1869)

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Feeds on: 

Acacia terminalis (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Turner 1904, McQuillan 1986, Common 1990, Schmidt, unpubl. data. Larvae usually feed on the flowers of Acacia sp. The foodplant is known as Acacia botrycephala.

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Bertya mitchellii (Euphorbiaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae feed on flowers and flower buds of various unrelated plants.

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Acacia sp. (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McQuillan 1986. Larvae feed on flowers and flower buds of various unrelated plants.

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Clematis microphylla (Ranunculaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae feed on flowers and flower buds of various unrelated plants.

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Solidago sp. (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McQuillan 1986. Larvae feed on flowers and flower buds of various unrelated plants.

"Chloroclystis" filata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Pultenaea largiflorens var. latifolia (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae feed on leaves and buds of the foodplant.

"Chloroclystis" filata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Hebe sp. (Plantaginaceae)

Notes: 

White 1991.

"Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Macadamia sp. (Proteaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae attack the flowers of Macadamia sp.

"Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Acacia sp. (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990, Schmidt, unpubl. data.

"Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Bertya sp. (Euphorbiaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990.

"Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Clematis sp. (Ranunculaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990, Schmidt, unpubl. data.

"Chloroclystis" insigillata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Solidago sp. (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990.

Chloroclystis s.l. sp.

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Feeds on: 

Scrophulariaceae

Notes: 

McQuillan 1986.

Collix ghosha (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Ardisia sp. (Primulaceae)

Notes: 

P. Bell, pers. comm., in: Holloway 1997, Tominaga 1998. Bell describes biology of Collix ghosha. The foodplant Ardisia sp. was in the former Myrsinaceae. A south-east Asian species C. griseipalpis Wileman, 1916 has been reared from Allophylus sp. (Sapindaceae). A subspecies C. g. phaeochiton Prout, 1932 has been reared from Ardisia sp. and Trigonostemon sp. (Euphorbiaceae) (Prout 1932).

Collix ghosha (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Embelia sp. (Primulaceae)

Notes: 

P. Bell, pers. comm., in: Holloway 1997, Tominaga 1998. Bell describes biology of Collix ghosha. The foodplant Embelia sp. was in the former Myrsinaceae.

Gymnoscelis delocyma Turner, 1904

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Feeds on: 

Scyphiphora hydrophyllaceae (Rubiaceae)

Notes: 

F.P. Dodd, pers. comm., in: Turner 1904. The larvae of the Malaysian species Gymnoscelis pseudotibialis Holloway, 1997 apparently feed on Hevea sp. (Euphorbiaceae) and Mangifera sp. (Anacardiaceae) (Yunus & Ho 1980, in: Holloway 1997).

Gymnoscelis derogata (Walker, 1866)

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Feeds on: 

Macadamia sp. (Proteaceae)

Notes: 

Zhang 1994. The species is known as Gymnoscelis subrufata Warren, 1898.

Gymnoscelis lophopus Turner, 1904

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Feeds on: 

Acacia aulacocarpa (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Turner 1904, Common 1990. Larvae feed on the flowers of the foodplant.

Fig. 5.

Figure 5.

Gymnoscelis lophopus, female

Habitat of Gymnoscelis lophopus is presented on Fig. 6.

Figure 6.

Habitat of Gymnoscelis lophopus, Queensland, Brisbane

Gymnoscelis lophopus Turner, 1904

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Feeds on: 

Lantana camara (Verbenaceae)

Notes: 
Schmidt, unpubl. data. Larvae feed on the flowers of the foodplant.

Gymnoscelis lophopus Turner, 1904

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Feeds on: 

Lantana sp. (Verbenaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990.

Gymnoscelis lophopus Turner, 1904

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Feeds on: 

Macadamia sp. (Proteaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae sometimes damage the flowers of Macadamia sp.

Gymnoscelis sp.

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Feeds on: 

Pittosporum venulosum (Pittosporaceae)

Notes: 
D. Herbison-Evans, pers. comm., 2015.

Microdes oriochares Turner, 1922

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Feeds on: 

Olearia ramulosa (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae feed on leaves of the foodplant.

Microdes squamulata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia baileyana (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Microdes squamulata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia buxifolia (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Microdes squamulata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia dealbata (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Microdes squamulata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia decurrens (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Turner 1904.

Microdes squamulata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia mearnsii (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979.

Microdes villosata Guenée, 1858

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Feeds on: 

Acacia sp. (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan 1999.

Pasiphila testulata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Malus domestica (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae occasionally damage the young fruits of apples. Three Europaean species, P. chloerata (Mabille, 1870), P. debiliata (Hübner, 1817) and P. rectangulata (Linnaeus, 1758) feed on Prunus spp. (Rosaceae), Vaccinium spp. (Ericaceae) and Malus sp., Pyrus sp., Prunus spp., Crataegus sp. and Amelanchier sp. (Rosaceae) (Mironov 2003). A New Zealand species P. urticae (Hudson, 1939) feed on Urtica ferox (Urticaceae).

Pasiphila testulata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Prunus avium (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae occasionally damage the young fruits of cherries. P. testulata is known as Chloroclystis testulata (Guenée).

Pasiphila testulata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Acacia terminalis (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990, Schmidt, unpubl. data, C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008. Larvae usually feed on the flowers of Acacia sp. The foodplant is known as Acacia botrycephala.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Acacia sp. (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae usually feed on the flower buds and flowers of Acacia.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Clematis sp. (Ranunculaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae can damage the foliage of the foodplant.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Cosmos sp. (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

Schmidt, unpubl. data. Larvae readily accepted flowers of Cosmos sp. from a garden in Brisbane.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Helianthus annuus (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae can damage the foliage of the foodplant.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Hypericum sp. (Hypericaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae can damage the foliage of the foodplant.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Malus domestica (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Common 1990. Larvae can damage the foliage of the foodplant.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Medicago sativa (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

Zhang 1994.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Prunus avium (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Zhang 1994.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Prunus cerasus (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

Zhang 1994.

Phrissogonus laticostata (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Rosa odorata (Rosaceae)

Notes: 

D. Herbison-Evans, pers. comm., 2015. Captured larvae readily accepted the flower petals from Rosa sp.

Symmimetis sp.

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Feeds on: 

Aglaia sp. (Meliaceae)

Notes: 

Holloway 1997.

Sauris cirrhigera (Warren, 1897)

Nomenclature: 

Tribe Trichopterygini

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Feeds on: 

Cinnamomum sp. (Lauraceae)

Notes: 

Dugdale 1980. One specimen of the Indo-Pacific species Sauris eupitheciata (Snellen, 1881) was reared from the folliage of Loranthus sp. (Loranthaceae) (Holloway 1997), of Sauris hirudinata Guenée, 1858 from Alseodaphne sp. (Lauraceae) and Lagerstroemia sp. (Lythraceae) (P. Bell, pers. comm., in: Holloway 1997), of Sauris interruptata (Moore, 1888) on Cinnamomum sp. (Lauraceae) Holloway 1997), and of one species occurring on Niue Island on Ficus prolixa (Moraceae) (Dugdale 1980).

Sauris commoni Dugdale, 1980

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Feeds on: 

Exocarpos latifolius (Santalaceae)

Notes: 

ANIC label. One larva was beaten from Exocarpos latifolia.

Sauris malaca (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Litchi chinensis (Sapindaceae)

Notes: 

Dugdale 1980, Common 1990. Larvae have been reported feeding on the young foliage of Litchi sp.

Sauris malaca (Meyrick, 1891)

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Feeds on: 

Toona ciliata (Meliaceae)

Notes: 

Dugdale 1980, Common 1990. Larvae have been reported feeding on the young foliage of Toona sp. The foodplant is known as Toona australis.

Tympanota perophora (Turner, 1922)

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Feeds on: 

Podocarpus lawrencei (Podocarpaceae)

Notes: 

ANIC label, Dugdale 1980. The species has been reared by I.F.B. Common (ANIC).

Acodia sp.

Nomenclature: 

Tribe Xanthorhoini

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Feeds on: 

Coprosma sp. (Rubiaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan 1999, McQuillan 2004.

Austrocidaria sp.

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Feeds on: 

Coprosma sp. (Rubiaceae)

Notes: 

Hudson 1898, Dugdale 1964, Dugdale 1988, McQuillan 1999, McQuillan 2004. One New Zealand species feeds on Myrsine sp. and Rapanea crassifolia (Myrsinaceae) (Dugdale 1971).

Chrysolarentia decisaria (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Pelargonium rodneyanum (Geraniaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988, C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

Chrysolarentia decisaria (Walker, 1863)

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Feeds on: 

Ranunculus prasinus (Ranunculaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988, C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

Chrysolarentia insulsata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Plantago lanceolata (Plantaginaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia lucidulata (Walker, 1963)

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Feeds on: 

Plantago lanceolata (Plantaginaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Hibbertia sp. (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Lythrum sp. (Lythraceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Malva sp. (Malvaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Mentha sp. (Lamiaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Polygonum sp. (Polygonaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Centaurium sp. (Gentianaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Chenopodium sp. (Chenopodiaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Medicago sp. (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Plantago sp. (Plantaginaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Solidago sp. (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Chrysolarentia vicissata (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Stellaria sp. (Caryophyllaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979, McFarland 1988. Larvae were feeding on introduced weeds in capture.

Epyaxa sodaliata (Walker, 1963)

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Feeds on: 

Anagallis arvensis (Primulaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland 1979. Larvae readily accepted leaves and buds of Anagallis arvensis but refused to feed on Plantago. A New Zealand species E. rosearia (Doubleday, 1843) feeds on Nasturtium officinale (Brassicaceae) (Hudson 1898).

Fig. 7.

Figure 7.

Epyaxa sodaliata, female

Habitat of Epyaxa sodaliata is presented on Fig. 8.

Figure 8.

Habitat of Epyaxa sodaliata, Queensland, Severnlea

Epyaxa sodaliata (Walker, 1963)

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Feeds on: 

Primula sp. (Primulaceae)

Notes: 

Schmidt, unpubl. data. Larvae were feeding on Primula sp. from a garden in Brisbane.

Epyaxa sodaliata (Walker, 1963)

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Feeds on: 

Myosotis arvensis (Boraginaceae)

Notes: 

D. Herbison-Evans, pers. comm., 2015.

Epyaxa subidaria (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Medicago polymorpha var. vulgaris (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979), Schmidt, unpubl. data. Captured larvae were reared.

Epyaxa subidaria (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Hydrocotyle sibthorpioides (Araliaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan (1999). Captured larvae were reared to the final instar.

Epyaxa subidaria (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Plantago lanceolata (Plantaginaceae)

Notes: 

McQuillan (2004). One New Zealand Epyaxa species is known to feed on Rumex sp. (Polygonaceae) and Tropaeolum majus (Tropaeolaceae) (White 1991).

Scotocyma albinotata (Walker, 1866)

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Feeds on: 

Coprosma repens (Rubiaceae)

Notes: 

Schmidt (2003), Schmidt (2005), Schmidt (2006a), Schmidt (2007).

Fig. 9.

Figure 9.

Scotocyma albinotata, female

Habitat of Scotocyma albinotata is presented on Fig. 10.

Figure 10.

Habitat of Scotocyma albinotata, Queensland, Bunya Mountains

Xanthorhoe vacuaria (Guenée, 1858)

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Feeds on: 

Medicago polymorpha var. vulgaris (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979), McFarland (1988). Captured larvae were reared. Malaysian Xanthorhoe liwagu Holloway, 1997 were feeding on Brassica sp. (Cruciferae) and Mentha sp. (Labiatae) (Yunus and Ho 1980, Singh 1953, in: Holloway 1997).

Anachloris subochraria (Doubleday)

Nomenclature: 

Unplaced to tribe

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Epilobium? ciliatum (Onagraceae)

Notes: 

S. Williams, unpubl. data.

Anachloris tofocolorata Schmidt, 2001

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Hibbertia virgata (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979), Schmidt (2001).

Anachloris uncinata (Guenée)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Hibbertia obtusifolia (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

Common (1966), McFarland (1979), Schmidt (2001).

Fig. 11.

Figure 11.

Anachloris uncinata, male

Habitat of A. uncinata is presented on Fig. 12.

Figure 12.

Habitat of Anachloris uncinata, Western Australia, Stirling Range

Anachloris uncinata (Guenée)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Hibbertia riparia (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

S. Williams, unpubl. data.

Anachloris uncinata (Guenée, 1858)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Hibbertia stricta (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979), Schmidt (2001).

Chaetolopha emporias (Turner, 1904)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Pteridium esculentum (Polypodiaceae)

Notes: 

ANIC label, Schmidt (2002). In ANIC there is a specimen with a label written by I.F.B. Common, “Larvae eat bracken fern".

"Chrysolarentia" actinipha (Lower, 1902)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Medicago polymorpha var. vulgaris (Fabaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979), McFarland (1988).

"Chrysolarentia" leucophanes (Meyrick, 1891)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Leptospermum scoparium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 
C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

"Chrysolarentia" leucophanes (Meyrick, 1891)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Melaleuca squamea (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 
C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

"Chrysolarentia" leucophanes (Meyrick, 1891)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Monotoca glauca (Epacridaceae)

Notes: 

C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2008.

"Chrysolarentia" severata (Guenée, 1858)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Astroloma humifusum (Ericaceae)

Notes: 

S. Williams, pers. comm., in: Marriott (2011).

"Chrysolarentia" sp. nr. severata

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Leptospermum scoparium (Myrtaceae)

Notes: 

C. Byrne, pers. comm., 2016. The species is recorded as "Euphyia" nr. severata. The collection details are: Cape Bruny, Tasmania, 28/10/99, C. Byrne.

"Chrysolarentia" squamulata (Warren, 1899)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Olearia ramulosa (Asteraceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1979).

Heterohasta conglobata (Walker, 1963)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Hibbertia scandens (Dilleniaceae)

Notes: 

ANIC label. Larvae feed on leaves and shoots of Hibbertia scandens.

Melitulias sp.

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Fabaceae

Notes: 

McQuillan (1986).

Melitulias s.l. sp. undescribed

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Casuarina paludosa var. robusta (Casuarinaceae)

Notes: 

McFarland (1988). The species cited as “Horisme” sp.? has been reared. The specimen apparently represents an undescribed species (Schmidt, unpubl. data).

Polyclysta hypogrammata Guenée, 1858

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Ficus sp. (Moraceae)

Notes: 

Turner (1904).

Visiana brujata (Guenée, 1858)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Urtica incisa (Urticaceae)

Notes: 

ANIC label, Schmidt (2006b), Schmidt (2013). Larvae were reared from eggs.

Visiana incertata (Walker, 1862)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Urtica incisa (Urticaceae)

Notes: 

Schmidt, unpubl. data. Larvae were reared from eggs.

Fig. 13.

Figure 13.

Visiana incertata, female

Habitat of Visiana incertata is presented on Fig. 14.

Figure 14.

Habitat of Visiana incertata, Bunya Mountains

Visiana incertata (Walker, 1862)

Material    Download as CSV 
Feeds on: 

Urtica dioica (Urticaceae)

Notes: 

Schmidt, unpubl. data. Final instar larvae readily accepted the leaves of Urtica dioica (flowers and buds were not offered).

Discussion

Larval food plants of 51 Australian larentiine species from the following tribes are presented, including Asthenini (5 species), Eupitheciini (17 species), Trichopterygini (4 species) and Xanthorhoini (10 species). Additionally, food plants of 15 species unplaced to tribe are listed. The larvae are recorded to feed on 36 plant families (Table 1). More than a half of plant species are native to Australia. Two species, namely Lantana camara (Verbenaceae) and Acacia mearnsii (Fabaceae) are recorded as invasive species.

Families of the larval food plants of Australian Larentiinae

No

Food plant

Tribe

Species

1

Araliaceae

Xanthorhoini

Epyaxa subidaria

2

Asteraceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes

2

Asteraceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" insigillata

2

Asteraceae

Eupitheciini

Microdes oriochares

2

Asteraceae

Eupitheciini

Phrissogonus laticostata

2

Asteraceae

Eupitheciini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

2

Asteraceae

Unplaced to tribe

"Chrysolarentia" squamulata

3

Boraginaceae

Xanthorhoini

Epyaxa sodaliata

4

Caryophyllaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

5

Chenopodiaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

6

Dilleniaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

6

Dilleniaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Anachloris tofocolorata

6

Dilleniaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Anachloris uncinata

6

Dilleniaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Heterohasta conglobata

7

Epacridaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena pulchraria

7

Epacridaceae

Unplaced to tribe

"Chrysolarentia" leucophanes

8

Ericaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena pulchraria

8

Ericaceae

Asthenini

Phrissogonus laticostata

8

Ericaceae

Unplaced to tribe

"Chrysolarentia" severata

9

Euphorbiaceae

Eupitheciini

Bosara minima

9

Euphorbiaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes

9

Euphorbiaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" insigillata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" approximata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" filata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" insigillata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis lophopus

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

Microdes squamulata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

Microdes villosata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

Pasiphila testulata

10

Fabaceae

Eupitheciini

Phrissogonus laticostata

10

Fabaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

10

Fabaceae

Xanthorhoini

Epyaxa subidaria

10

Fabaceae

Xanthorhoini

Xanthorhoe vacuaria

10

Fabaceae

Unplaced to tribe

"Chrysolarentia" actinipha

10

Fabaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Melitulias sp.

11

Gentianaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

12

Geraniaceae

Asthenini

Epicyme rubropunctaria

12

Geraniaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia decisaria

13

Haloragaceae

Asthenini

Epicyme rubropunctaria

14

Lauraceae

Trichopterygini

Sauris cirrhigera

15

Lamiaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

16

Lythraceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

17

Malvaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

18

Meliaceae

Eupitheciini

Symmimetis sp.

18

Meliaceae

Trichopterygini

Sauris malaca

19

Moraceae

Unplaced to tribe

Polyclysta hypogrammata

20

Myrtaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena balioloma

20

Myrtaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena ischnophrica

20

Myrtaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena pulchraria

20

Myrtaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena xylocyma

20

Myrtaceae

Unplaced to tribe

"Chrysolarentia" leucophanes

21

Onagraceae

Unplaced to tribe

Anachloris subochraria

22

Piperaceae

Asthenini

Poecilasthena pulchraria

23

Pittosporaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis sp.

24

Plantaginaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" filata

24

Plantaginaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia insulsata

24

Plantaginaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia lucidulata

24

Plantaginaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

24

Plantaginaceae

Xanthorhoini

Epyaxa subidaria

25

Podocarpaceae

Trichopterygini

Tympanota perophora

26

Polygonaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia vicissata

27

Primulaceae

Eupitheciini

Collix ghosha

27

Primulaceae

Eupitheciini

Epyaxa sodaliata

28

Proteaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" insigillata

28

Proteaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis lophopus

28

Proteaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis derogata

29

Ranunculaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" catastreptes

29

Ranunculaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" insigillata

29

Ranunculaceae

Eupitheciini

Phrissogonus laticostata

29

Ranunculaceae

Xanthorhoini

Chrysolarentia decisaria

30

Rosaceae

Eupitheciini

"Chloroclystis" approximata

30

Rosaceae

Eupitheciini

Pasiphila testulata

30

Rosaceae

Eupitheciini

Phrissogonus laticostata

31

Rubiaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis delocyma

31

Rubiaceae

Xanthorhoini

Acodia sp.

31

Rubiaceae

Xanthorhoini

Austrocidaria sp.

31

Rubiaceae

Xanthorhoini

Scotocyma albinotata

32

Santalaceae

Trichopterygini

Sauris commoni

33

Sapindaceae

Trichopterygini

Sauris malaca

34

Scrophulariaceae

Eupitheciini

Chloroclystis s.l. sp.

35

Urticaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Visiana brujata

35

Urticaceae

Unplaced to tribe

Visiana incertata

36

Verbenaceae

Eupitheciini

Gymnoscelis lophopus

"Chloroclystis" approximata, "C." insigillata, Gymnoscelis lophopus, G. derogata, Pasiphila testulata, Phrissogonus laticostata and Sauris malaca are known as minor pests of cultivated plants.

The food plants are recorded for about 20% of Australian species therefore conclusions about food preference are rather preliminary. Moreover, the larentiine larvae are often polyphagous, hence the assumptions that taxa are closely related based solely on food preference of the larvae should not be overestimated.

Tribes Asthenini and Eupitheciini

Like in the Palaearctic region, larvae of Australian species of the tribe Eupitheciini are mostly polyphagous or oligophagous, tending to feed on flowers and buds of various plants. The tribes Eupitheciini and Asthenini are often considered closely related (e.g. Xue and Scoble 2002). Holloway (1997) treated the ‘asthenine’ genera in Eupitheciini, although he mentioned that Poecilasthena Warren, Parasthena Warren, Eois Hübner, Polynesia Swinhoe and Pseudopolynesia Holloway could be placed in Ashtenini. The present study revealed no evidence of concordance of the data on food preference of the larvae of these two tribes. The asthenine larvae mainly feed on leaves of native Epacridaceae, Ericaceae, Haloragaceae and Myrtaceae, with one species feeding on Piperaceae, whereas the larvae of Eupitheciini prefer feeding on the flowers and buds of Asteraceae, Euphorbiaceae, Fabaceae, Hypericaceae, Pittosporaceae, Plantaginaceae, Primulaceae, Proteaceae, Ranunculaceae, Rosaceae, Rubiaceae, Verbenaceae and occasionally on Meliaceae and Menispermaceae. The tribe Asthenini seems to be distinct from Eupitheciini, however, additional data need to be collected and analysed to clarify placement of several genera currently included in these tribes.

Tribe Trichopterygini

Food plants are recognized for several Indo-Pacific and South American species of the genera occurring in Australia. Larvae of one Japanese species of Episteira Warren from the tribe Trichopterygini feed on foliage of trees or shrubs of Podocarpus sp. (Podocarpaceae) (Sugi, 1987, in: Holloway 1997), like Australian trichopterygine species of Tympanota. Generally, the Australian trichopterygines are associated with Lauraceae, Meliaceae, Santalaceae and Sapindaceae. In Europe, larvae of Trichopterygini are associated with trees and shrubs from the families Anacardiaceae, Cupressaceae, Salicaceae and Sapindaceae, with a few polyphagous species feeding on Aquifoliaceae, Araliaceae, Caprifoliaceae, Cornaceae, Ranunculaceae, Rhamnaceae and Rosaceae (see Hausmann and Viidalepp 2012). Most of the trichopterygine food plants belong to the Sapindales in both Europe and Australasia.

Tribe Xanthorhoini

Like in the Palaearctic region, larvae of Australian xanthorhoines are polyphagous, feeding mainly on foliage of flowering plants and herbs. Most of the Australian larvae accepted Plantaginaceae, Fabaceae and Rubiaceae.

Genera unplaced to tribes

Larvae of a New Zealand species Aponotoreas dissimilis (Philpott, 1914) accepted Dracophyllum sp. (Epacridaceae), whereas A. synclinalis (Hudson, 1903) was feeding on Empodisma minus (Restionaceae) (B. Patrick, pers. comm., in: Craw 1986). The genus Aponotoreas Craw is currently assigned to the tribe Hydriomenini (McQuillan and Edwards 1996) but does not share several morphological characters of the tribe and is in need of taxonomic study (Schmidt, unpubl. data). Epacridaceae is a food plant of several asthenine species and of Chrysolarentia leucophanes of which the tribal assignment is still unclear. Apart from A. synclinalis, no further larentiine larvae are known to feed on Restionaceae. In Europe, the larvae of Hydriomena spp. are known to feed on Betulaceae, Corylaceae, Ericaceae, Fagaceae and Salicaceae (see Hausmann and Viidalepp 2012). Regarding the larval food preference of Aponotoreas, there is no indication of a close affinity with Hydriomenini.

Larvae of an Indo-Pacific species Eois grataria (Walker, 1861) feed on Mallotus sp. (Euphorbiaceae) (Singh, 1953, in: Holloway 1997), while most of South American species of the genus readily accept Piper sp. (Piperaceae) (Strutzenberger and Fiedler 2011). Eois Hübner is not assigned to any tribe currently although it has been cited in Asthenini and Eupitheciini, or excluded from both tribes (Holloway 1997, Xue and Scoble 2002, Strutzenberger and Fiedler 2011, Viidalepp 2011). Glochidion sp., Bertya sp., Trigonostemon sp., Hevea sp. (Euphorbiaceae) are food plants of the Indo-Australian eupitheciine larvae, which would indicate an affinity of Eois with Eupitheciini. However, larvae of one asthenine species feed on Piperaceae, like Poecilasthena pulchraria (Doubleday, 1843) that is placed in Asthenini. Adult morphological characters indicate a close relationship of the Australasian Eois to Eupitheciini (Schmidt, unpubl. data).

Acknowledgements

The work has been mainly conducted at the Zoologische Staatssammlung (ZSM, Munich, Germany) and Australian National Insect Collection (Canberra, Australia). Many thanks to Axel Hausmann (ZSM), Ted Edwards and Marianne Horak (ANIC) for offering access to the geometrid moth collections. I am grateful to Catherine Byrne (Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart) for sharing information on the food plants of six Tasmanian larentiine species which she reared and for valuable comments on the manuscript. Peter McQuillan (University of Tasmania, Hobart) and Don Herbison-Evans (Macleay Museum University of Sydney) are acknowledged for sharing data on the larvae of several geometrid moths. I appreciate valuable comments made by Sei-Woong Choi (Mokpo National University, Moppo) and Axel Hausmann on the manuscript. Sincere thanks to Alice Wells and Laurence Mound (Canberra) for hospitality. Stefan Schmidt (ZSM) is thanked for support.

References

Supplementary materials

Suppl. material 1: List of the Australian Larentiinae (Geometridae) and their food plants
Authors:  O. Schmidt
Data type:  food plants
Suppl. material 2: List of the Australasian Larentiinae (Geometridae) and their food plants
Authors:  O. Schmidt
Data type:  food plants