Comocrus behri: The Mistletoe Moth
Photographed today on our grape vine, using my Nokia Lumia 530, 5mp windows camera, on auto, cropped. Click on any of the images and you will be taken to the gallery.
UPDATED next day: I’m wrong. This is the Australian grapevine moth (Phalaenoides glycinae) … I got sidetracked by the drawing! (I haven’t even got mistletoe)
UPDATED: Here is what Wikipedia says about the right one:
The Australian grapevine moth (Phalaenoides glycinae) is a moth of the Noctuidae family. It is endemic to the south-eastern half of Australia, but is an invasive species in many parts of the world, including Canada and South Africa. The wingspan is about 50 mm. The larvae mainly feed on Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Hibbertia obtusifolia, Amyema gaudichaudii, Epilobium ciliatum, Fuchsia and Oenothera species, but mainly Vitis vinifera, hence it is considered a pest.
The Indian myna (Acridotheres tristis) was introduced into Australia in 1862 to deal with a number of insect pests including the grapevine moth. In this it was unsuccessful, and ironically the bird is now itself considered a pest in many parts of Australia.
I’ll leave this here, even though it is not the same moth. It is a terrific drawing and looks much the same.
Comocrus behri (Angas, 1847) aka ‘Mistletoe Moth’, is widely distributed in southern Australia from Perth to Melbourne and adjacent to Bass Strait, occurring as far north as Derby, Western Australia, and Clermont and Rockhampton in Queensland. It may be seen during daylight hours hovering around mistletoe species such as Amyema miquelii, Amyema melaleucae and Amyema cambadgei growing on Casuarina and Eucalyptus trees. The adult moths feed on Eucalypus flower nectar,have a wingspan of some 58 millimetres and are basically black with white bands running through the wings. Males exhibit ‘hill-topping’ behaviour, flying to high points in the landscape and there encountering females ready for mating.
IMAGE: By Arthur Bartholomew (1834 – 1909) (English) (Artist, Details of artist on Google Art Project) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons