Cryptophasa nubila (T.P. Lucas, 1894)
♂ - Qld, Airlie Beach, 16. Sep. 1994, J.C. Keast leg. (ANIC). [AMO].
♀ - Qld, Brisbane, 28. Jan. 1905 (ANIC). [AMO].
♀ - Qld, Mooloolah, 18. Nov. 1923 (ANIC). [AMO].
♀ - QM
♂ - QM
♀ - QM . Turner’s C. intermedia var. alba form.
Cryptophaga nubila T.P. Lucas, 1894. Descriptions of new Australian Lepidoptera, with additional localities for known species. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 8: 133–166 . Syntype(s) SAMA number unknown ♂♀, Brisbane, Qld.
Cryptophaga intermedia Lucas, T.P. 1894. Descriptions of new Australian Lepidoptera, with additional localities for known species. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 8: 133–166 . Syntype(s) SAMA number unknown ♂♀, Brisbane, Qld.
Cryptophaga nubila. Illidge, 1895: Xylorycts, or timber moths. Queensland Nat. Hist. Soc. Trans., 1, 29-34.
Cryptophaga nubila Lucas. Turner, 1898. The Xyloryctidae of Queensland. Annals of the Queensland Museum 4: 1–32 .
Cryptophaga nubila var. alba, Turner, 1898. The Xyloryctidae of Queensland. Annals of the Queensland Museum 4: 1–32 .
Cryptophaga nubila Lucas. Walsingham, 1898: Proceedings of the Entomological Society of London (vii-xii, following p. 444)
Cryptophaga nubila Philpott, 1927: The Maxillae in the Lepidoptera. Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand, Vol. 57, 721-745 .
Cryptophasa nubila (T.P. Lucas, 1894). Nielsen, E.S., Edwards, E.D. & Rangsi, T.V. 1996. Checklist of the Lepidoptera of Australia. Monogr. Aust. Lepid. 4: i–xiv, 1–529 & CD–ROM [87; 346: Note #127].
Cryptophasa nubila (T.P. Lucas, 1894). Beccaloni, G. W., Scoble, M. J., Robinson, G. S. & Pitkin, B. (Editors). 2003. The Global Lepidoptera Names Index (LepIndex). World Wide Web electronic publication. http://www.nhm.ac.uk/entomology/lepindex [accessed 17 April 2010].
Cryptophasa alba, Turner 1898. ssp. of nubila Lucas. Beccaloni, G. W., Scoble, M. J., Robinson, G. S. & Pitkin, B. (Editors). 2003. The Global Lepidoptera Names Index (LepIndex). World Wide Web electronic publication. http://www.nhm.ac.uk/entomology/lepindex [accessed 17 April 2010].
Cryptophasa nubila (T.P. Lucas, 1894). Edwards, E. D. (2003), Xyloryctinae. Australian Faunal Directory. Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/abrs/online-resources/fauna/afd/taxa/XYLORYCTINAE [accessed 18 June 2010].
Original description, T.P. Lucas, 1894
Cryptophaga nubila, sp. nov.
♂♀ 30-42 mm. Head, palpi and thorax white. Antennae white, with fuscous pectinations in ♂, ciliated in ♀. Legs white, posterior tarsi with base of joint black. Abdomen with a red spot on second segment bordered with white; first segment in ♂ grey, but covered with fringe, two tufts of white hairs; in ♀ segment white; hind segments in ♂ grey, thickly diffused with black and ashy-grey; in ♀ light grey bordered with white. Forewings elongate, costa very gently rounded, hindmargin rounded, grey-white freely irrorated with smoky-black scales, veins smoky-grey; a suffusion of smoky-black all round disc leaving disc a grey-white as groundcolour; a like suffusion on inner border leaving a narrow strip of groundcolour between it and the darker area of the wing; no distinct discal spot: cilia grey, tinted with smoky-grey. Hindwings in ♂ black, darker on veins, inner margin and base white; a row of black spots on veins almost hidden by groundcolour; in ♀ hindwings white diffused with ashy-grey; streaks of white from base in interneural spaces; veins smoky-grey; cilia white with a smoky line in ♂, in ♀ divided into dots.
Brisbane; reared by Mr. Illidge from larvae taken on Swamp Mahogany (Tristania suaveolens [Lophostemon suavolens]).
Subsequent description, Turner 1898
Cryptophaga nubila, Lucas. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 1893, 161. (Cryptophaga intermedia, ibid., 162.) Male, 28-33 mm.; antennal pectinations 4. Females, 32-42 mm. Forewings with vein 2 from ¾. Hindwings with 6 and 7 from a point. Head, face and palpi white. Antennae white at base, passing into fuscous. Thorax white, ochreous-whitish, or pale slate-coloured. Abdomen in male fuscous, segments narrowly edged with white; in female white; in both sexes second segment orange-red. Legs white, tarsi annulated with fuscous. Forewings oblong, costa in male very slightly, in female moderately arched, apex moderately rounded, hindmargin rounded, slightly oblique; white, ochreous-whitish, or pale slate-coloured, frequently sparsely, sometimes densely, irrorated with dark fuscous scales; costal margin white; a black dot in disc at1/3, and two others transversely placed at 3/5, lower somewhat posterior – these are very rarely obsolete, but sometimes lost in the fuscous suffusion; a row of black dots along hind margin and apical 1/5 of costa, sometimes obsolete; cilia white or tinged with pale fuscous, in which case a darker line at 1/3 can usually be traced. Hindwings in male dark fuscous, in female white, sometimes more or less suffused with fuscous; a hind marginal series of black dots; cilia white.
Var. Alba.– It is convenient to denote by this name the specimens with white ground-colour of forewings without fuscous irroration.
A very variable species. I have bred a large series, and have obtained the most extreme examples from the same food-plant. I regard the white colouration as ancestral, the darker varieties as a protective adaptation to the colours of the bark of the trees to which the species is attached.
Brisbane: the larvae tunnelling the stems and dragging in for food the leaves of Melaleuca leucodendron (Tea-tree), Melaleuca linariifolia, Callistemon salignus, Callistemon lanceolatus, and probably other species of these genera; also of Tristania suaveolens [Lophostemon suavolens] (Swamp Mahogany) and Backhousia myrtifolia; and in gardens of the Guava. The moths emerge in November and December.
For example the close similarity in colour between Uzucha humeralis and the bark of the spotted gum and between Cryptophaga nubila and that of the teatree is very obvious, and becomes significant when we remember that the trees mentioned are the food plants of these moths. At the same time other Xyloryctidae, e.g., C. epadelpha, seem to be coloured In a manner specially suitable for rendering them conspicuous. (Illidge, 1892).
This [Cryptophasa epadelpha] and the two following species [C. pultenae and C. nubila] are closely allied, and the larvae are also closely similar. (Turner, 1898).
C. epadelpha may be distinguished by the total absence of discal dots on the forewings; C. pultenaeae by the more rounded apices of the forewings and the presence of discal dots; the white variety of C. nubila resembles C. epadelpha in shape of wing, the discal dots are usually present, and it never has the pure snow-white tinge possessed by fresh specimens of the other two species. (Turner, 1898).
C. nubila, Lucas, ♀; (Walsingham, 1898)
Good examples, of progressive reduction in the maxillary palpi are exhibited in this large family. Lichenaula has a five-segmented palp; the genera Telecrates, Odites, Procometis, Agriophora [sic], Chalarotona, Scieropepla, Eschatura, Uzucha, and Catoryctis have each lost a segment; Xylorycta and Maroga have only three remaining; Cryptophaga rubescens has two, with a third represented by a minute papilla, while in C. nubila this papilla has been lost. (Philpott, 1927).
127. Cryptophasa nubila (T.P. Lucas, 1894) and C. intermedia (T.P. Lucas, 1894) were published simultaneously. Priority was given to C. nubila (T.P. Lucas) by Turner (1898a). (Common, in Nielsen, E.S., Edwards, E.D. & Rangsi, T.V. 1996).
Food plants: Larva boring in stem. Larval foodplant: Lophostemon suaveolens, Backhousia myrtifolia, Melaleuca leucadendra, M. lineariifolia, Callistemon salignus, C. lanceolatus, Syzygium luehmannii, introduced Psidium guava (Myrtaceae). (Edwards, 2003).
Flight period: January, September, November.
Distribution: New South Wales, Queensland. Endemic. (Edwards, 2003).