La Trobe
37813_SOURCE01_3_A.pdf (16.45 MB)

Systematics and Ecology of the Australian Aquatic Moths, Acentropinae (Insecta: Lepidoptera)

Download (16.45 MB)
posted on 2023-01-18, 16:55 authored by John Henry Hawking
Submission note: A thesis submitted in total fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy to the Department of Environmental Management and Ecology, School of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science, Technology & Engineering, La Trobe University, Bundoora.

The Aquatic Moths, Acentropinae (Crambidae) of Australia were revised by the traditional morphological taxonomic techniques of wing patterns, wing venation and genitalia of the males, which were complemented by adding larval morphology, larval ecology and molecular sequencing. The revision recognised 17 genera, with 54 species, of which seven genera and 10 species were undescribed. Forty one species were consistent with 10 described genera, Anydraula, Elophila, Eoophyla, Margarosticha, Nymphicula, Paracataclysta, Paracymoriza, Parapoynx, Strepsinoma and Tetrernia, and 11 species were consistent with seven undescribed genera. Three genera, Hylebates, Nyctiplanes and Neoshoenobia were inconsistent with the Acentropinae and were removed. Taxonomic descriptions, plus taxonomic keys of the adults were given for the genera and species. The larval morphology contained apomorphic characters which supported taxonomic placement of many species.The larval characters provided diagnostic apomorphic characters which distinguished 20 previously mis-placed species and confirmed the generic placement of 11 species. The structure of the forecoxae was found to be a major diagnostic character state which allowed generic placement of species. This character was strongly supported by other morphological characters (breathing apparatus structure and arrangement, head direction and mandible form) and ecological parameters (habit, habitat, food type and case or retreat type). The CO1gene inferred the association of 31 larvae with their respective adults, with the larval taxonomy supported by diagnostic morphological characters. The CAD, CAD+CO1 and CO1 gene trees inferred generic and specific relationships, and phylogeny, which were supported by the traditional morphological descriptions of the adults. The larval morphology, larval ecology and molecular sequencing greatly increased the quantity of taxonomic information and character states to provide an informed systematic placement of Australian acentropine species. The knowledge gained will allow a more critical evaluation of the world Acentropinae fauna and the use of these techniques will help resolve some of the taxonomic impediments currently experienced in the systematics of the Australasian and Oriental fauna.


Center or Department

Faculty of Science, Technology & Engineering. School of Life Sciences. Department of Environmental Management and Ecology.

Thesis type

  • Ph. D.

Awarding institution

La Trobe University

Year Awarded


Rights Statement

The thesis author retains all proprietary rights (such as copyright and patent rights) over the content of this thesis, and has granted La Trobe University permission to reproduce and communicate this version of the thesis. The author has declared that any third party copyright material contained within the thesis made available here is reproduced and communicated with permission. If you believe that any material has been made available without permission of the copyright owner please contact us with the details.

Data source

arrow migration 2023-01-10 00:15. Ref: latrobe:37813 (9e0739)

Usage metrics

    Open Theses


    No categories selected



    Ref. manager