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New Zealand Plant Protection 66 (2013): 148-152

Observations on Philobota sp. (Lepidoptera: Oecophoridae) near Hamilton in 2012

P.J. Gerard


Two species of Philobota (Lepidoptera: Oecophoridae) have been confirmed to be present in New Zealand. These are P. chionoptera found near Napier and Cape Kidnappers and an unnamed species ANIC5 belonging to the P. hydara group found at Ruakura Research Centre, Hamilton. In spring 2012, a light trap confirmed the presence of a self-sustaining population of the latter at Ruakura. Emergence commenced 1 October, peaked on 30 October and the last moth was trapped on 3 December. Prior to the peak, males dominated the female population by 15:1, while after the peak the ratio was reduced to 1.4:1. Both mated and unmated females were collected and the maximum fecundity was 120 eggs. The moth was confirmed at a site 2 km from the Research Centre. A parasitoid, Anacis sp. (Ichneumonidae: Cryptini), was collected in a cage containing Philobota sp. ANIC5 pupae.

Keywords: pasture tunnel moth, light trap, Anacis sp., protandry..

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