Home Page click for info on pic BOGONG - MOTH

Bogong is an Australian Aboriginal name for Moth and the Bogong Moths scientific name is "Agrotis infusa" belonging to the family Noctuidae

The main physical difference between a moth and a butterfly is their antennae. Bogongs Markings Butterflies have thin long ones with a clubbed tip, whilst a moths antennae is more of a feather type shape and feel. The colour of the Bogong Moth ranges from a light brown through to black The Bogong moth has a wingspan of around 5 cms and like all moths has 4 wings On each fore wing the Bogong moth has a dark arrow-marked streak with one comma shaped spot and one pale round spot The hind wings are predominately a light brown with dark edging.

Migration map Bogong moths breed on the flatlands (see "Breeding" section) but to escape the summer heat they migrate to the higher country of the Australian Alps which includes the Great Dividing Range and the snowy mountains and high plains of Victoria and N.S.W. (see map) Strong winds can be a problem to the migratory path of these moths and that is why sometimes there are Bogong Moth plagues in the cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra which are situated between the highlands and Australia's eastern seaboard They return to their breeding grounds in early Autumn to mate and lay their eggs. This trip can be up to 3,000 kms in length and a greater % of the moths perish.

click for info on pic ROCK RESTING (aestivating)
During Australia's summer November to march the Bogong moth rests (remains inactive) in rock crevices or caves living off body fat reserves. As the picture shows there is so many moths they can completely cover crevices or rock floors and walls

The Bogong moths provided a rich food source for Australian Aborigines of the area. The moths would be hunted or collected by the male members as the moth lay at rest (aevistate) in the mountains The moths were prepared in various ways, cooked in sand and hot ashes to remove wings and legs or mashed and roasted into moth cakes Many huge Bogong Moth feasts occurred with members from various tribes getting together


The Bogong moth lays its eggs (up to 200) on a foodplant near the soil.
Cutworm The caterpillar (larvae) breaks out in four weeks The larvae varies from a light brown to almost black colour The Bogong larvae lives in a burrow under the soil at the base of a foodplant. At night time they feed on the plant often cutting right through it just above the soil. This is why they are referred to as Cutworms and are a pest to farmers They like such plants as cereals, peas, linseed, cauliflower, cabbages, alfalfa and silverbeet. They then go into a cocoon in their underground (or at least "under litter") burrow where 4 weeks later the moth emerges.

Australian Museum - Bogong Moth
Butterfly House - Bogong Moth

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