T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Wiseana jocosa

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Hepialidae
Genus: Wiseana
Species: Wiseana jocosa
Scientific name: Wiseana jocosa
Common name: Porina moth 

Wiseana jocose is one of seven porina species (Wiseana cervinata, W.copularis, W. fuliginea, W. jocosa, W. mimica, W. umbraculata and W. signata. They are difficult to distinguish from each other.
Wiseana jocosa habitat is open ground or forest clearings and they may also occur in forest and shrublands
Wiseana adult moths mate as soon as they emerge from the soil (spring and early summer) and at dusk fly in large numbers during spring and early summer. They do not feed, but each moth can lay up to 3000 eggs on the pasture surface. They only live for about four days.
After the eggs hatch the small caterpillars first take shelter among the leaf bases. They then construct silk-lined casings on the soil surface, and as they grow they construct permanent burrows in the soil. They emerge from their burrows at night to feed, severing grass and clover leaves at the base of plants and dragging them back to their burrows where they are eaten.
They invade lawns and pasture grasses and have the potential to reduce the long-term quality and production of pasture. The damage they cause is most noticeable from April to September.


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