Horned Micro Moth for ID
Mon, Oct 6, 2008 at 5:29 PM
came across this little guy in my garden this morning and was taken by the stunning iridescence in the brown scales and the two little horns. The yellow section also fluoresces in the sunlight and was hard to photograph without flaring. It is about 1 cm long and only about 1 to 1.5mm cross section. It is seen here sitting on the leaf of a cucumber vine. No idea what the ID might be so hopefully someone can help.
Burnett Region, Queensland AU
We usually can’t even identify the Microlepidoptera we receive from the U.S., but perhaps someone will write in with an identification for your lovely Australian specimen.
October 7, 2008
Hi Daniel – What a great new site. Congratulations!
Re: Microlepidoptera from Australia
I am wondering if the microlepidoptera is a Micropterigidae. “A Guide to Australian Moths by Zborowski and Edwards describes them as “tiny, hairy head, short thickened antennae held up and out, shining colours, wings held steeply roof-wise.” They are “very small, shining in gold and blackish purple and are found in moist places, usually rainforest.” They are active during the day, preferring shade or dappled sunlight. Sabatinca sterops is very small and golden in colour and is found in Northern Queensland, which I think is where Trev lives? Unfortunately the book has no photograph of Sabtinca sterops.
Hope this helps,
Update: October 8, 2008
after several inquiries to moth men here in Australia the ID is most possibly XYLORYCTIDAE Telecrates melanochrysa. Several images can be found at http://www.ento.csiro.au/gallery/moths/Telecratesmelanochrysa/telecrates_melanochrysa_02
Thanks Grev for your research. The two little horns turn out to be labial paps. Possibly not easily spotted in the photo is the fact that the antennae are lying back along the body curving down to the leaf just before the second brown band.