Philodoria spilota (Walsingham)

Haleakala Philodora Moth (Philodoria spilota)

This species was described 1907; it is known only from the forested slopes at elevations of about 1530 m above sea level of the Haleakala volcano on the island of Maui, Hawaiian Islands.

The species reaches a wingspan of about 0,7 cm; the head and the thorax are brownish fuscous, the abdomen is fuscous; the forewings are bronze fuscous with silvery white spots, the hindwings are brownish fuscous.

The biology and the host plant of this species remain completely unknown.

The unique holotype is a faded, damaged female and not a male as Walsingham stated in his original description. Walsingham said that the type was “injured when being described”. It is badly broken – the hindwings and abdomen are glued to the fore part of the body; the head is badly abraded and glued to the thorax; the left antenna is missing.” [1]

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syn. Elachista spilota Walsingham

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Depiction from: ‘Fauna Hawaiiensis; being the land-fauna of the Hawaiian Islands. by various authors, 1899-1913. Cambridge [Eng.]: The University Press 1913’

(public domain)

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References:

[1] Elwood C. Zimmerman: Insects of Hawaii 9; Microlepidoptera. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu 1978
[2] Shigeki Kobayashi; Chris A. Johns; Akito Y. Kawahara: Revision of the Hawaiian endemic leaf-mining moth genus Philodoria Walsingham (Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae): its conservation status, host plants and descriptions of thirteen new species. Zootaxa 4944(1): 1-715. 2021

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edited: 18.03.2021