Backyard Farming Forum

Whistling Moth
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Author:  Peasants [ Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:28 am ]
Post subject:  Whistling Moth

We have been seeing what we thought was a beetle flying low in the late afternoon, and its wings seemed to make a noise as it flew. It darted around so quickly it was impossible to photograph!
Finally managed to catch one in a bug catcher and it stayed still long enough for this photo……

McCarthy Park f (1 of 1).jpg
McCarthy Park f (1 of 1).jpg [ 146.46 KiB | Viewed 10068 times ]

After trying to identify it off the web, we gave up and sent the photo to the Entomologist at the WA Museum, and he identified it as a Whistling Moth (Hecatesia thyridion)…..
"What you have there is a whistling moth, Hecatesia thyridion (family Noctuidae: subfamily Agaristinae). What's pretty amazing about these moths is that the males have modified forewings, which they bash together while flying to make a whistling sound. You can see the modified parts of the wings (called castanets, like flamenco dancers use!) as a little semi-circle on the forewing in your picture. Anyway, the males defend territories in elaborate aerial battles which are accompanied by this whistling, which also attracts females."

We have lived here for 20 years and never seen one before!

Author:  Jaymie [ Sun Feb 16, 2014 7:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Whistling Moth

how cool :)

Author:  Simo [ Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Whistling Moth

That is so cool, I have "bird dropping spiders" in my fruit trees they also have odd behaviour, first they hide on leaves disguised as bird poo all day so they don't get eaten then at night descend down a single silk thread and emit a pheromone that attracts male moths wanting to mate into its out stretched arms.

Talk about a disappointing outcome for the moth! :lol:

Author:  Peasants [ Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Whistling Moth

Wow! That sounds interesting!

Author:  Perpetuitas [ Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Whistling Moth

I really enjoy the variety nature uses on itself! :joy:

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