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Taxonomy and geographical relationships of australian ethmiid moths lepidoptera gelechioidea


, : Taxonomy and geographical relationships of australian ethmiid moths lepidoptera gelechioidea. Australian Journal of Zoology Supplementary Series (112): 1-58

The Australian ethmiid fauna is comparatively small but highly endemic, having 14 species of Ethmia, 12 of which are known only from this continent. Adults are described and illustrated, the geographical distributions mapped, and biologies reviewed. Using phenetic data, the species are assigned to five groups, four of which are widespread in Indomalayan and Oriental or Palaearctic regions, their Australian representatives occurring mainly in rainforest or wet sclerophyll forests. One group, with six species, is endemic and occupies the dry vegetation formations characteristic of most of Australia. On the basis of larval and pupal characters of four of the groups, as well as those of adults, the Australian ethmiid fauna is postulated to have originated after the continent was separated from other southern continents, via invasions from the north. There is no indication of relationship to the New World southern continent fauna. One name is newly synonymized, E. sciaptera (Lower, 1903) = E. postica (Zeller, 1877), and two species are newly described, E. eupostica (TL: vic. Alice Springs, N.T.) and E. virilisca (TL: Millstream, W.A.).

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DOI: 10.1071/AJZS112


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