Noctuidae - Acontiinae




Acontia chea (Druce)

Acontia chea Druce, 1898, Biologia Centrali-Americana. Insecta. Lepidoptera-Heterocera, 2:493, pl. 95, figs. 3,4.

Acontia eudryada Smith, 1905, J. New York Ent. Soc., 13:210. NEW SYNONYMY.

NOTE: In Druce's description of Acontia chea his male and female types are actually two different species. The male is this species and his "female" is Acontia jaliscana Schaus. No formal lectotype designation has yet exists, but the use of chea for this species is traditional.

Diagnosis: The forewing ground color is pure white, although there is sometimes a yellowish tinge toward thepostmedial line. The postmedial line is surrounded by olive-yellow along its inner side and a grayish band along its outer. The entire dark marking surrounding the postmedial line has a distinctive s-shaped configuation. The base of the forewing has a large gray patch at the base of the wing and a red-brown patch at the apex. The white areas of the terminal and subteminal areas are extensive. Wing expanse from base to apex in one selected individual 14 mm.

Distribution: (Based only on material in the USNM). Acontia chea is primarily a species of northern Mexico, but its range extends into southern Arizona.

Identification Quality: Good

Larva: Unknown

Foodplants: Unknown

Distribution map based on specimens in the USNM


Acontia chea

Acontia chea is most likely to be confused with Acontia cretata. Both the male and female genitalia of the two species are abundantly distinct. Superfically the situation is not so good. The red-brown coloration about the forewing postmedial line is less extensive and more concentrated in chea than in cretata. In particular this markings has a distinct s-shaped configuration in chea. The white areas of the terminal and subterminal areas are more extensive in chea than in cretata.

Acontia chea is also superficially similar to Acontia new species 2. Acontia new species 2 is a smaller species (forewing expanse from base to apex 11 mm rather than the 14 mm. of chea. The dark markings around the forewing postmedial line are straighter and grayer than those of Acontia chea. The male genitalia of the two species are distinctive, particularly in the left valve (in the orientation of the photographs).

Similar Species

Acontia cretata

Acontia new species 2