Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A friendly "Snout Moth"

Several days ago I had an unusual visitor in my kitchen.
It was a strange looking moth, with a large "snout", and densely hairy body, and a strongly "upright" stance.

Note the long legs and upright stance of this moth.
Its antenna is visible clearly, held close against the body.
I sought assistance from some "Moth-ers" on the "mothing-aus" Yahoo group.
Ian responded, suggesting that my moth was a "Snout Moth" - named for obvious reasons.

Photo of the "snout" from underneath.
One eye is hidden by dense hairs.
The Antennae are held low, close to the body.
The "palpi" are held parallel and together they form the "snout".

The family is known as the Lasiocampidae (in scientific parlance)
According to Wikipedia: "Their common name 'snout moths' comes from their unique protruding mouth parts of some species that resemble a large nose."

The moth was resting on the side of a cut-down plastic drink bottle.

I searched Donald Hobern's Flickr Album of Lepidoptera. Found the appropriate "set" the sub-family - the Lasiocampinae (Australian)
The closest match for my moth (almost a "dead ringer" I would suggest) is Pararguda nasuta.

It is interesting that this moth has ventured out in the famous "August Winds" (which in Robertson blow between June and September). They were blowing on the day I found this moth inside my house. and they are still blowing outside as I write this story.


Flabmeister said...

Perhaps this bold adventurer is one more sign of an early Spring. Near Canberra we have had many reports of Fan-tailed Cuckoo as against some years none over Winter; Grey Fantail have returned to our garden3 weeks earlier than in the past three years; and I heard an Olive-backed Oriole yesterday.

I went on an orchid search yesterday and found many rosettes, but not any flowers as yet.


Anonymous said...

Hello Denis,

I've just checked Peter Marriott's "Moths of Victoria" Part 1 and your moth certainly looks like the example of Paraguda nasuta featured.

Plenty of rain happening here. Hope the wind has abated for you.


dreamfalcon said...

What a cool name - and it really fits :-) Never heard of them - thanks for sharing!

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Dreamfalcon
Yes, It really looks like it has a great big nose, doesn't it?