Answer to the Monday Night Mystery

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Schizura ipomoeae (Notodontidae)

Last night’s mysterious moth larva played right into the hands of lepidoptera expert Chris Grinter, who swept all 10 points less than 8 minutes after the post went up:

Notodontidae cats tend to have this broken/jagged leaf appearance – they cut little circles out of the leaves and then sit in them to match the leaf edge. Also, the green band and the two large humps on the back make this stand out in the Schizura. It might appear to be S. unicornis, however that species lacks the distinct humps that this species does. Form Wagner “similar to S. unicornis, but with A5 distinctly humped”.

Over on Facebook, parasitoid biologist Josephine Rodriguez wryly noted that the mystery insect was merely “microgastrine food”. True enough. Two additional points to Josephine for thinking outside the box.

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