ELSEWHERE: We first found Tetrachroa edwardsi November 1996 in the Watagan State Forest, north of Sydney, when a newly emerged specimen was attracted to a moth light being run by Bart Hacobian. Then on 24th August 2006, during the day, we found a newly emerged specimen sitting on the outside wall of a retail building in a Coffs Harbour Industrial Estate.
DORRIGO PLATEAU: None to date
ELSEWHERE: None to date
Larval food plants:
DORRIGO PLATEAU: APOCYNACEAE:Parsonsia straminea (Common Silkpod or Monkey Rope Vine)
ELSEWHERE: As for Dorrigo Plateau plus; Parsonsia plaesiophylla
Breeding season on the Dorrigo Plateau: Thought to be September to April
Flight habit: Nocturnal - Active at night.
Adult Moth: Size at rest - tip of thorax to tip of forewing 64mm to 70mm. Tip of forewing to tip of other forewing 55mm to 60mm. Mature larva: length - ??mm. Colour form - green Pupation: Thought to occur in a soft web cocoon below the food plant vine either within the soil or within leaf litter.
Interesting observations: The authors of the book Hawkmoths of Australia (published January 2020) advised us in 2013 that Tetrachroa edwardsi feeds on Parsonsia straminea. As at June 2020 we are yet to find a larva or an egg ourselves searching this common vine on our property frequently. We have chosen Parsonsia Hawk as its common name for our website. In 2020 Jim Tuttle advised us as follows; As forT. edwardsi, the way I first worked out the life history was as I did with several other species whose life histories were unknown. I had a contact in southern NSW who indicated he occasionally had adults come to lights in the spring. He agreed to call me when the first adult(s) showed up at light. We agreed that I would visit two weeks hence from that first adult appearing and he would take me to the exact site. At that time, the larval host was unknown but I suspected it to be a vine (unknown what kind) because John Olive had a 30-year old image of a last instar larvae that was unidentified and feeding on a vine which also could not be identified because it literally only showed a length of vine (no leaves). Grhhh!! When I got to the collecting site that spring, I started looking at vines, one massive vine just putting out new growth (later id confirmed asP. straminea). Within minutes, I found two eggs, one of which hatched soon after safely putting it in the container. In your garden, focus exclusively on the tenderest new leaves. Using this approach, I have found eggs/early instar larvae twice at the site mentioned above and once near Brisbane.
03/03/19 An interesting record from Todd Burrows providing important information regarding time of eclose from its pupa and how high the moth then climbed to grow its wings, dry them and prepare for its first flight when it would also discharge waste fluids left over from its metamorphosis. From Todd Burrows, Gold Coast, QLD. -Trevor Deane thanks for the information. I’ll have to check the exact time I took the images but I think it was about 8pm 3/3/19 that I first came across the moth. I could tell from the wing position that it had recently eclosed. It was about 1.5m off the ground hanging from low parts of the Parsonsia straminea. The vine was densely covering and appears to have killed the Swamp Oak it is growing on. I wonder if the moth had pupated in the ground or perhaps within the dense foliage of the vine.