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Type: Article
Published: 2023-12-22
Page range: 1-13
Abstract views: 100
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Enigmatic tube-web construction by Gorgopis Hübner ghost moth larvae in South Africa (Lepidoptera: Hepialidae)

Research Associate; McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity; Gainesville; Florida; USA
Institute of Entomology; Biology Centre of the Czech Academy of Science; and Faculty of Science; University of South Bohemia České Budějovice; Czech Republic; Museum Witt; Weiden in der Oberpfalz; Germany


Faculty of Science

Blommekloof Farm; Leeukloof; Mossel Bay; 6500; PO Box 2991; Mossel Bay; 6500



Caixa postal 1206; 84.145-000 Carambeí; Paraná; Brazil


Research Associate

Altai State University; Lenina pr. 61; Barnaul; 656049; Russia; Tomsk State University; Lenina pr. 36; 634050; Tomsk; Russia; Western Caspian University; 31; Istiglaliyyat Street; Baku; Azerbaijan
behavior development feeding host plant larvae lectotype


A partially damaged male imago reared from a larva feeding on Eragrostis curvula (Poaceae) was identified as a species of Gorgopis. Adult and immature stages of the reared specimen are illustrated. The larva lives within a tunnel in the soil. At the ground surface, the tunnel extends above ground as a tube of grass stalk fragments cut by the larva and bound together by silk. These feeding tubes are found at the base of grass tussocks, principally among the dense accumulation of dead stalks. It is not known if the larvae feed on dead or live grass foliage, or a combination. The feeding tube is the second mode of larval feeding documented for ground dwelling southern African Hepialidae, the other being 'silk purser' feeding webs of unknown taxonomic status. The lectotype for Gorgopis libania Cramer, 1781 is here designated.


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