Noctuidae - Stiriinae




Neumoegenia poetica Grote

Neumoegenia poetica Grote, 1882, Papilio, 2: 132.

Diagnosis: Neumoegenia poetica is a small, but distinctive, species from southern Arizona. The forewing is ovate and mostly covered with metallic green scales. The dorsal one-fourth of the wing along the costa is white and contrasts strongly with the rest of the wing. A basal brown patch is present near the base and inner margin, and a roughly triangular white patch surrounded by metallic green exists in the center of the wing. This triangular patch is elongated along the veins at a position corresponding to the lower part of the reniform mark if it were present. All other maculation is absent. The hindwing is tinged with light dull gray. Wing length from base to apex: mean = 12.16 mm., standard deviation = 0.40 mm., n = 10.

Distribution: Neumoegenia poetica is known only from Pinal, Pima, Santa Cruz, and Cochise counties in southern Arizona, although it is apparently common within its range. The species probably occurs in western New Mexico and northern Mexico, but I have not seen any specimens from these localities. All of the Mexican specimens I have seen that might have been this species are the closely related sister species smithi. Some variation exists in poetica, particularly in the development of the forewing basal brown patch and the size of the median triangular white spot.

Identification Quality: Excellent

Larva: The larva has not been described. John G. Franclemont, however, has reared the species from Bidens leptocephala Sherff (Asteraceae) and has kindly provided me with color slides of the larvae. The larva is gray with a slight pink tinge from the dorsum to below the level of the spiracles. The ventral region is darker and browner. There are dorsal and subdorsal pink lines accented with brown on either side. A strong, contrasting yellow, subspiracular line accented with black is present. The pinacula are yellow and surrounded by a black ring. Dorsal chevrons of dark gray are present on abdominal segments one, two, seven, and eight. The eighth segment is humped. The head is not visible in the photographs.

Foodplants: John G. Franclemont has reared the species from Bidens leptocephala Sherff (Asteraceae)


Neumoegenia poetica


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