Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Moth caterpillars

While Trevor, Craig and Grace poked around the rocks looking for lizards and snakes I took a break (from the tension!) and poked around under the bark of some eucalypts - and found this interesting caterpillar. It's Oenosandra boisduvalii Boisduval's Autumn Moth. Apparently it lives in southern Australia, including Tasmania, and the male and female moths look quite different from each other and were thought to be separate species at one stage.

But it doesn't do as much damage as another species that is in plague proportions around the coast at Anglesea at the moment. Painted Cup Moth caterpillars, Doratiphora oxleyi, are everywhere, chewing on leaves of various species of shrubs and trees. They're doing a lot of damage but presumably the plants will recover. I'll be down there again soon and will look for the cup-shaped cocoons on twigs.

1 comment:

Snail said...

Fantastic caterpillars; great photos of them. I've never seen an Autumn moth caterpillar before, so that was cool.