Female Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii. Photo: © NHMUK Male Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii. Photo: © NHMUK Male Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii f. discreta, Övö-Hangaj Prov., 20Km south of Hovd, Mongolia. Photo: © Laszlo Ronkay


Smerinthus gaschkewitschii Bremer & Grey, 1853, In: Motschulsky (ed.), Etudes ent. 1: 62. Type locality: [China,] Pekin [Beijing].

Synonym. Marumba gashkevitshi Kuznetsova, 1906, Horae Societatis Entomologicae Rossicae 37: 293-346.

Synonym. Marumba gaschkewitschi [sic] discreta Derzhavets, 1977, Nasekomye Mongol. 5: 643. Type locality: Mongolia, Eastern Province, Bayandun.

Synonym. Marumba bremeri Eitschberger, 2012, Neue Entomologische Nachrichten 68: 46.

Synonym. Marumba gordeevorum Eitschberger & Saldaitis, 2012, Neue Entomologische Nachrichten 68: 46.

Synonym. Marumba greyi Eitschberger, 2012, Neue Entomologische Nachrichten 68: 47.

Note. Marumba gaschkewitschii is currently divided into four subspecies: Marumba g. gaschkewitschii, Marumba g. complacens (Walker), Marumba g. carstanjeni (Staudinger), and Marumba g. gressitti Clark. However, the boundaries between these are not clear-cut, particularly within China. Specimens matching two or more subspecies can be found in the same locality at the same time, for example, as was observed at Yangling (17.vii.1995) and 30km north of Huangling, Shaanxi (24.vii.1995) (Pittaway & Kitching, 2000).

Three former subspecies/species, namely Marumba g. echephron (Boisduval, [1875]), Marumba harutai Eitschberger & Ihle, 2012, and Marumba g. irata Joicey & Kaye, 1917, are now considered to be distinct species (Eitschberger, 2012).


Wingspan: 70--92mm. In the male genitalia, uncus bilobed, lobes rounded. Gnathos reduced, represented by an inconspicuous fold lacking medial lobe; lateral piliferous tubercles well developed. Valva shape intermediate between those of Marumba sperchius and Marumba amboinicus; processes of subdorsal basal fold broad. Harpe similar to that of Marumba sperchius. In the female genitalia, sterigma distal edge thickened and proximal edge raised to a high ridge, which covers ostium when viewed ventrally; deeply incised medially.

Resting male of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii, Xiangshan (Fragrant Hills), Beijing, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway.


Marumba gaschkewitschii occurs in most habitats, including cities and orchards. Particularly common in montane forests rich in species of Prunus and Pyrus (Mell, 1935). Common in the hills to the west and north of Beijing in the Ziziphus/Vitex/Rhus vegetation zone.

Xiangshan (Fragrant Hills), Beijing, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway


China: iv (Beijing); 24.iv-vi (Shandong). Mongolia: 21.iv (Övö-Hangaj Province); 3.v (Hovd Province); 9.vii (Vostochnyy Province). Russia: (Buryatia).

Marumba gaschkewitschii s.l. has one to three generations a year. One is usual in Liaoning and Beijing, two in Ningxia, Hebei, Shandong, Jiangsu and Zhejiang; and three in Jiangxi (Chu et al., 1979). (Full-grown larvae were abundant around Beijing in late August 2003 (Pittaway, pers. obs. 2003).) Mell (1935) noted three to four generations (between 8.iii-5.x) in northern Guangdong and four to five generations (between 15.ii-2.xi) in southern Guangdong.


OVUM: Pale, translucent jade green at first, but developing a yellow sheen; oval (2.07 x 1.57mm), shiny and smooth.

Egg of Marumba echephron, Japan. Photo: © Tony Pittaway.

LARVA: Full-fed 75--83mm.

Generally feeds at between 0.5 and 1.5m off the ground on terminal branches of bushes rather than trees. Smaller plants set in amongst other shrubs are preferred. Larvae can be met with at very high densities, withn often four or five per branch.

Full-grown grey-green form of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii on Crataegus, Chengde, Hebei, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway Full-grown yellow-green form of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii on Ziziphus, Xiangshan, Beijing, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway Full-grown yellow-green form of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii on Ziziphus, Xiangshan, Beijing, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway

PUPA: 40--48mm. Reddish mahogany brown and glossy; tapering caudad from a blunt head and thorax. Head tuberculate, with two vertical, blunt, broad crests frontad. Proboscis not present, but replaced by a knob-like tubercle. Wings smooth, abdominal segments finely punctate. Spiracular ridges present on movable abdominal segments. Cremaster broadly conical, with a sharp point; tuberculate. Similar to that of Callambulyx tatarinovii, but head more rough and with two crest-like tubercles frontad, as found in most species of Marumba. Formed in an almost silk-free cell in the soil. The overwintering stage.

Pupa of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii, Xiangshan, Beijing, China. Photo: © Tony Pittaway

Larval hostplants. Recorded in China on Eriobotrya japonica and various species of Malus, Prunus and Pyrus (Mell, 1922b; Yang, 1978; Chu et al., 1979; Chu & Wang, 1980). It is a pest of Japanese apricot (Prunus mume) in Shaanxi (Pittaway & Kitching, 2000). The majority of hostplant records for Marumba gaschkewitschii are Rosaceae but there are two reliable records for Marumba g. irata on Salix in Yunnan (Mell, 1922b). Yang (1978) and Chu & Wang (1980) also give Ziziphus mauritiana [Z. jujuba]. The first author was able to confirm this unusual hostplant by finding numerous full-grown larvae on Z. jujuba shrubs in the hills west of Beijing (Xiangshan) during late August (Pittaway, pers. obs. 2003). Larvae were also common on apricot Prunus armeniaca at Chengde. However, records from Buxus microphylla and Euonymus alatus (Chang, 1989) are suspect, while those on Vitis vinifera (Chu et al., 1979; Chu & Wang, 1980) are probably erroneous. The source and veracity of the record on Weigela (Zhang, 1994) are unknown.

In captivity the larvae found on Ziziphus and Prunus armeniaca readily transferred to Crataegus (Pittaway, pers. obs. 2003).

Recorded in Primorskiy Kray, Russia, on Prunus, Pyrus and Crataegus (Derzhavets, 1984); also on Malus baccata (Izerskiy, 1999b).

Recorded in Korea on Kerria japonica, Prunus mume, P. persica, P. salicina, P. serrulata, Malus pumila and Pyrus pyrifolia var. culta (Park et al., 1999). However, records from Buxus microphylla var. koreana are suspect.




China: Lowlands of eastern China, from Beijing and Shandong (Weihai; Jinan; Yantai; Qingdao) south through Shanxi (Zhongtiao Shan) and Hubei (Mufu Shan) to the Yangtze river.

Mongolia: Hovd Province (Bulgan River, 10Km east of Jarantaj) (Grosser, 1982); Övö-Hangaj Province (20Km south of Hovd); Vostochnyy Aimak (Derzhavets, 1977).

Russia: Buryatia (Selenduma; 20Km S Ulan-Ude); Transbaikalia (Derzhavets, 1984; Rudykh & Ekimova, 2005); Chita (Edinenie, Onon River).

The core distributions of the current four subspecies of Marumba gaschkewitschii are as follows:

There is a pair in the CMNH from Lanzhou in central Gansu and also a female in the NHMUK from the Chin Hills in Burma/Myanmar.


(see above).

Global distribution of Marumba gaschkewitschii gaschkewitschii. Map: © NHMUK.


Holarctic; eastern Palaearctic region. Pleistocene refuge: Polycentric -- Manchurian, Japanese, Sinopacific, Sinotibetan and Yunnan refugia.

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© A.R. Pittaway & I.J. Kitching (The Natural History Museum, London)