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Aethalida Walker

Type species: distinguenda Walker = rudis Walker, syn. n. (Sulawesi).

Synonym: Meringocera Felder (type species plutonica Felder) syn. n.

This genus includes a number of taxa from central Indonesia, the Philippines and Borneo (a new species). Typically they show strong sexual dimorphism, a factor which has led to sexes being described independently. Males are dark brown, with creamy white patches basally, at the centre of the costa, and apically on the forewing; the hindwing is edged irregularly on the costa with pale yellow or red. Females have the forewings more extensively marked with white: a medial band and an irregular row of spots at the margin. The hindwings are uniform bright red in the type species and allies, yellow with some dark marginal markings in the Philippines species. The antennae are black, almost filiform in both sexes. The thorax has black spots on the patagia and tegulae, and a further three pairs dorsally.

The male abdomen has the eighth segment similar to that of Spilosoma. The valves of the genitalia are finger-like, round at the apex, slightly tapering. The aedeagus vesica is without large cornuti. The tegumen bears large lateral lobes in the type species.

In the female genitalia the bursa and a long, apically angled appendix bursae arise from a short, sclerotised ductus; the bursa has no signa. The dorsal glands of the ovipositor lobes are large with three dichotomies.

There is some similarity in female fades to the Indian genus Pangora Moore. Pangora exhibits little sexual dimorphism. The males have multilobed valves, an apical spine to the aedeagus and cornuti in the vesica. The tegumen has slender accessory processes on each lobe. The female genitalia have a flexed sclerotised ductus as in some Spilosoma, a short appendix bursae and three signa in the bursa as in Areas.

Aethalida includes a large typical group of species (possibly all subspecies of pasinuntia Stoll as treated in Seitz, Gross-Schmett. Erde 10), the first four listed below, and somewhat divergent ones from Seram and the Philippines. The Bornean species described afterwards differs in lacking sexual dimorphism, but has several features that indicate it is best placed in Aethalida. The species are:

Aethalida pasinuntia Stoll comb. n.
= albidior Rothschild syn. n.
= plutonica Felder syn. n.
= burica Holland syn. n.
= tricolor Pagenstecher syn. n.

S. Maluku
Aethalida conflictalis Walker comb. n.  N. Maluku
Aethalida rudis Walker comb. n.  Sulawesi

= distinguenda Walker syn. n.
  = reducta Rothschild syn. n.
  ssp. banggaiensis Nieuwenhuis

Banggai Is.
Aethalida dohertyi Hampson comb. n.   Sangihe
Aethalida quadrimaculata Talbot comb. n. S. Maluku (Seram)

Aethalida dora Semper comb. n.
= whiteheadi Rothschild syn. n.

Aethalida borneana sp. n.  Borneo

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