Penestola bufalis ( Guenée, 1854 ),

Bernard Landry, 2016, Taxonomic revision of the Spilomelinae (Lepidoptera, Pyralidae s. l.) of the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador, Revue suisse de Zoologie 123 (2), pp. 315-399: 365-367

publication ID 10.5281/zenodo.155309

publication LSID

persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Penestola bufalis ( Guenée, 1854 )


Penestola bufalis ( Guenée, 1854) 

Figs 44, 45View Figs 41 - 48, 120View Figs 119 - 121, 166View Figs 163 - 167

Stenia bufalis Guenée, 1854: 245  .

Piletocera bufalis (Guenée)  : Schaus, 1923: 29. ‒ Parkin et al., 1972: 105. ‒ Linsley & Usinger, 1966: 162.

Penestola bufalis (Guenée)  : Peck et al., 1998: 227. ‒ Causton et al., 2006: 141. ‒ Roque-Albelo & Landry, 2015.

Material examined

Syntypes: 3 ♀ ( BMNH).

Other specimens: 5 ♂, 20 ♀, 26 of undetermined sex from the Galápagos Islands: – Española: Hood [no precise locality]. – Fernandina: Punta Espinosa; [no precise locality]. – Isabela: n[ea]r. Punta Tortuga, N Tagus Cove, edge of mangrove swamp, among Bursera graveolans; Puerto Villamil; 1 km W Puerto Villamil; 2 km W Puerto Villamil; Albermarle, San[to] Tomas, 1200 f[ee]t. alt [itude]. – Pinzón: [no precise locality]. – Santa Cruz: Bahía Conway  ; littoral zone, Tortuga Bay; Charles Darwin Research Station, wall on Invert[ebrate]s Lab[oratory]., GPS: elev[ation]. 11 m, S 00° 44.478’, W 90° 18.132’; CDRS; vic[inity]. Mirador, 620 m; Indefatigable [no precise locality]. – Santiago: Cerro Inn; James Bay. – Seymour Norte: Arid zone. Deposited in AMNH, CAS, CDRS, CNC, MCZ, and MHNG.

Diagnosis: Measuring 16-17 mm in wingspan for the available males ( Fig. 44View Figs 41 - 48) and 17-20 mm for the females ( Fig. 45View Figs 41 - 48), specimens of this species can be somewhat difficult to separate from the four other Galápagos species harbouring brown wings with darker markings. The key provided above under Herpetogramma phaeopteralis (Guenée)  will help in this respect.

Biology: There are no records on the natural history of this species in the literature or on the Internet. Specimens were reared from seeds of Black Mangrove, Avicennia germinans  (L.) L. ( Acanthaceae  ) on Isabela, by L. Roque-Albelo (deposited in CDRS) (Roque- Albelo, 2006). In the Galápagos moths were collected mostly near sea level in anthropized habitats and others (Isabela, Cerro Inn and Española) only modified by introduced mammal species such as goats. Collecting dates of the Galápagos specimens are in January, March, April, and May.

Distribution: Described from French Guyana, there are specimens in the BMNH also from Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Colombia, Brazil, and many islands of the Antilles. Patterson et al. (2015) also report it from south Florida and south Texas. In the Galápagos the species is known from Española, Fernandina, Isabela, Pinzón, Santa Cruz, Santiago, and Seymour Norte.

Remarks: This species was described from four females from Cayenne, French Guiana and three of them are in the BMNH. One of these lost its abdomen and the other two have theirs in a gelatine capsule. Their external characters match those of the Galápagos specimen that I compared with them. I refrain from designating a lectotype for this taxon because it is well characterized and the fourth syntype may still turn up and have its abdomen attached.


Invertebrate Collection


American Museum of Natural History


California Academy of Sciences


Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids, and Nematodes


Museum of Comparative Zoology


Museum d'Histoire Naturelle














Penestola bufalis ( Guenée, 1854 )

Bernard Landry 2016

Penestola bufalis (Guenée)

Peck S. B. & Heraty J. & Landry B. & Sinclair B. J. 1998: 227

Piletocera bufalis (Guenée)

Schaus W. 1923: 29

Stenia bufalis Guenée, 1854 : 245

Guenee M. A. 1854: 245