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Phalacra Walker

Type species: metagonaria Walker = vidhisaria Walker, Sri Lanka, India, ? = perspicaria Fabricius.

The wings are characteristically shades of fawn and brown, with linear fasciation, that on the forewing rather oblique. Some fasciae may be more crenulate or punctate. The apices of both fore- and hindwings are rather produced, those of the hindwings acutely angled where vein M1 meets the margin, with another, slight, obtuse angle at the end of vein Sc. The forewing may also be angled at CuA1. In wing shape, therefore, the genus is similar to Pseuderosia.

The male antennae are narrowly unipectinate, the pectinations so broad and flat as to give a lamellate appearance.

The male abdomen lacks coremata and has the eighth segment only slightly modified. The uncus is narrow, deeply bifid, the gnathus absent, the valves simple, the aedeagus robust, sometimes distally ornamented, and the saccus variably developed.

The female of the type species has simple, rather square ovipositor lobes, a laterally expanded but not extensively sclerotised sterigma, a very long, slender ductus bursa and a more or less spherical corpus bursa that is generally scobinate but with no definite signum.

The type species has been reared in S. India by Bell (MS) and was illustrated by Moore (1884-7). Bell described the larva as cylindrical, somewhat flattened, tapering slightly towards each end. The suranal process is short, minutely bifid. The body is covered with setiferous, fleshy, spine-like tubercles, six to each segment. The colour is light green with a broad dorsal red-green band that is centred thinly with white and flanked yellow. The illustration of Moore shows the central white band as broader, flanked by double lines enclosing yellow. There is a red subdorsal spot on A1 and the suranal process is rose-coloured. The pupa has eight hooked shaftlets on the cremaster.

The larvae lie on the underside of the leaf, bringing another leaf underneath, fixed with silks, to conceal them. Pupation is in a similar retreat, more strongly made with more silk, the silk covered with white powder.

The host-plants recorded are palms, including the genera Calamus, Caryota, Cocos and Phoenix.

The genus is found mostly in the mainland Oriental tropics, particularly the Indian Subregion, with a few species in Sundaland. There are two, possibly three, in Borneo.

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