Two nights ago, just as I was shutting down for the night, well after midnight, I noticed this interesting moth on my front verandah. I managed to snap a few images of it.
I did what I often do, and wandered through numerous photos of moths on the Internet, and guess (wrongly as it turned out) that it might have been a member of the Thaliana genus, as several moths I found in that group had similar strong triangulated markings like my moth.
Thanks to advice from the moth forum which Duncan kindly set up a little while back, I can now report that this moth is named Fodina ostorius, of the Catocalinae (sub-family), which puts it into the Noctuidae family. Thanks to Ian McMillan for setting me straight on this.
This link will take you to "Australian Moths Online" - the general gallery page. You need to search by moth name, or genus, or family. But the gallery is a valuable resource, to search for "similar" moths - not that such "look-alike" searches are reliable (as I discovered). I would not have arrived at a correct ID, without help from an experienced person such as Ian.
Here is the specific link to this species: Fodina ostorius.
From Don Herbison-Evans' Moths and Caterpillars site (the scientific name index page), I was able to search by specific name, and went straight to this page. The advantage here is that it has a photo of a live moth, as well of a preserved specimen. It is clearly a perfect match for my moth.
Don often has some notes about preferred food plants of the speciific Caterpillars. In this case, it shows the Milk Vine, Marsdenia as a preferred food plant. The local Robertson Rain Forest is well supplied with Marsdenia vines, so it makes sense that I should have been visited by this moth.The colouration on the body of this moth is a frequently used 'warning signal" (such as of a wasp or a bee). I have no idea if it is indeed a poisonous moth. It is more likely that it is the commonly adopted "Batesian Mimicry" where a palatable species resembles an unpalatable species, or one with a sting, or poison. Personally, I have no desire to test this theory, but will not eat any moth which looks like a wasp, no matter how fat and tasty it might be in reality.