MORWENNIUS DECORATUS (Moore, 1872) -- Ornamented hawkmoth

Female Morwennius decoratus. Photo: © NHMUK Male Morwennius decoratus. Photo: © NHMUK Male Morwennius decoratus, Mengla, Yunnan, China. Photo: © Viktor Sinjaev.

TAXONOMY

Smerinthus decoratus Moore, 1872, Proc. zool. Soc. Lond. 1872: 568. Type locality: [India,] Sikkim.

Synonym. Smerinthus decoratus Moore, 1872.

Synonym. Marumba decoratus indochinensis Gehlen, 1933.

Synonym. Mimas strigfenestra Zhu & Wang, 1997.


ADULT DESCRIPTION AND VARIATION

Wingspan: 72mm. Female dark olive-brown. Forewing with outer margin highly excised between veins M1 and R5 and much angulated towards outer angle; suffused with pale pink. A large irregular median brown patch is present, bordered with pink on costa and partly including a pale reniform spot, beneath which is a dark brown 'inverted comma'-shaped mark. With two curved postmedian pink lines, the inner one waved near the inner margin; some diffused brown streaks near outer angle; a triangular brown-edged patch on costa before apex, with a short white streak below it. Hindwing with a broad black and narrow pink streak near anal angle (Bell & Scott, 1937).


Adult Morwennius decoratus, Champasak Province, southern Laos, June 2007. Photo: © Alexandre Teynié.

ADULT BIOLOGY


FLIGHT-TIME

China: 18.vii (Yunnan).

In Nepal in mid June at 1500m altitude.


EARLY STAGES

OVUM: Unknown.

LARVA: In the final instar pale grey-green, with a pair of yellow dorso-lateral lines running from head to horn, the dorsal area between these lines greyer. With a faint yellow oblique side stripe running down and forward from the base of the horn. Head almost spherical, grey-green, with a pair of yellow cheek stripes. Whole body, head and horn granulose. True legs and horn dull reddish (Eitschberger & Ihle, 2019).

PUPA: Glossy mahogany brown; very like that of Marumba (Eitschberger & Ihle, 2019).

Larval hostplants. In Thailand on Bombax insigne Wall. (Eitschberger & Ihle, 2019).


PARASITOIDS

Unknown.


LOCAL DISTRIBUTION

China: Yunnan (Menghai, 950m; Mengla; Menglun, Xishuangbanna Botanical Garden).


GLOBAL DISTRIBUTION

Nepal, northeastern India (Sikkim, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh), southwestern China (Yunnan), northern Thailand, Laos (Champasak Province), Vietnam, Peninsular Malaysia and Indonesia (Sumatra).


Global distribution of Morwennius decoratus. Map: © NHMUK.

BIOGEOGRAPHICAL AFFILIATION



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