What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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Eupterotidae

Overview

Panacela (4 spp.) is endemic and has a frenulum and retinaculum in males, but not in females; it is without an epiphysis and the tornus of the hind wing is slightly produced. The larvae of P . lewinae live gregariously in communal shelters of silk, spun in the branches of Exocarpos , Eucalyptus and other trees, and sometimes cause extensive defoliation. They occasionally damage Pinus radiata . The larval hairs are capable of inflicting skin rashes in humans.

Description

Antennae bipectinate to apex in both sexes; proboscis very weak or absent; maxillary palps absent; labial palps short; epiphysis sometimes present, tibial spurs 0-2-2; fore wing usually with retinaculum, areole absent, R 2 and R 3 usually fused, and R 2 or R 2+3 arising from R 4 beyond its junction with R 5 , CuP vestigial or absent; hind wing with frenulum usually present, functional, Sc and Rs well separated, usually connected by R 1 , CuP vestigial or absent, 2 anal veins. Larva with dense secondary setae, often branched, dorsal verrucae of abdominal segment 1 similar to those of 2-8, crochets biordinal, shorter series with subapical spur or dentate. Pupa in flimsy cocoon of silk mixed with larval hairs.

Distribution

This chiefly Old World family (Forbes 1955) includes 3 genera in Australia. In the Indo-Malayan Eupterote (1 sp.), and in Cotana (2 spp.) which also occurs in New Guinea, a large epiphysis is present in the male, but absent in the female. Eupterote lacks the frenulum and retinaculum found in Cotana . E . expansa is a large, anthelid-like species from North Qld.

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