Philodoria kauaulaensis Kobayashi, Johns & Kawahara

Kobayashi, Shigeki, Johns, Chris A., Lopez-Vaamonde, Carlos, Camiel Doorenweerd,, Kawakita, Atsushi, Ohshima, Issei, Lees, David, 2018, Hawaiian Philodoria (Lepidoptera, Gracillariidae, Ornixolinae) leaf mining moths on Myrsine (Primulaceae): two new species and biological data, ZooKeys 773, pp. 109-141: 109

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Philodoria kauaulaensis Kobayashi, Johns & Kawahara

sp. n.

Philodoria kauaulaensis Kobayashi, Johns & Kawahara  sp. n. Figs 5I, J, 7H, 10, 14B

Type locality.

Kauaula (Maui).

Type material.

Holotype ♀, Kauaula, Maui, 18.viii.2014 (stored in 99% ethanol), C.A. Johns leg., host: Myrsine lanaiensis  , 31.vii.2014, CJ-381, SK690 in BPBM. The holotype is incomplete but we consider it distinctive enough to be worth describing. What remains of the holotype was mounted by placing three wings without mountant under a coverslip: two forewings (3/4 of right wing and half of left wing), and the apical portion of one hindwing (Fig. 5I). The head, antenna, thorax, and legs were sacrificed for molecular analysis.

Additional material.

2 unsexed (CJ-064, CJ-072), entirely sacrificed for molecular analysis and belonging to BIN BOLD:ADI5327 (See Remarks): 1 unsexed, Haelaau, Maui, 26.iv.2013 (stored), C.A. Johns leg., host: M. lessertiana  , 8.iv.2013, CJ-064, KT982404; 1 unsexed, Haelaau, Maui, 29.iv.2013 (stored), C.A. Johns leg., host: M. sandwicensis  , 8.iv.2013, CJ-072, KT982407.


The forewing pattern of this species is similar to that of P. succedanea  , but differs from the latter by having broad orange transverse fasciae (Fig. 10E, F) and a white and bronze band near the apical portion of wing, in the middle interrupted by a blue patch (Fig. 5I, J).


Adult (Fig. 5I, J). Forewing length 2.4 mm, basal part of holotype forewing missing. Descriptions of the basal forewing and part of the body were based on photographs of adult moths (CJ-064, 072). Head and frons fuscous; maxillary palpus unknown; labial palpus ochreous. Antennae dark fuscous. Thorax unknown. Forewing shiny, metallic bronze with three large bright orange transverse fascia: an oblique one from costal fold to dorsal 1/4; a second at the middle of wing, narrowing greatly in the dorsum, containing a white costal spot; a third at 3/4 in the middle, interrupted by a blue patch; all fascia bordered with black scales: one white color band at middle of the first bronze color band, others on both extremities of third and fourth bands; a fuscous patch extending toward termen and apex with a black apical spot; cilia shiny, dark bronze grey. Hindwing dark tawny fuscous. Abdomen fuscous above, whitish beneath.

Male genitalia. Unknown.

Female genitalia. (Fig. 7H) (n = 1). Similar to P. succedanea  and P. auromagnifica  , but different in having rather smaller and rounded spines on the signa.



Host plants.

Primulaceae  : Myrsine lanaiensis  Hillebr., M. lessertiana  A. DC., and M. sandwicensis  A. DC.


(Figs 10, 14B). The mine is initially spiral-shaped (Fig. 10B, C) and gradually expands as the larva feeds and the mine later gets the form of a blotch (Fig. 14B). The pupal cocoon is situated outside the mine, usually on leaf surface (Fig. 10D).

DNA barcoding.

BIN BOLD:ADI5327. The two specimens sequenced for COI are from Maui and have a 0.17 p-distance between them, the p-distance to the nearest neighbor, P. auromagnifica  , is 5.58%.


The specific epithet is derived from the type locality, Kaua`ula (pronounced ‘cow-wa-u-la’) Valley, an important site for Hawaiian endemic plants and culturally and spiritually for Native Hawaiians.


Johns et al. (2016) collected larvae from Myrsine lessertiana  and M. sandwicensis  in West Maui and identified the reared adult moths as P. auromagnifica  (Coll. ID CJ-064 / GenBank accession no. KT982404 and CJ-072 / KT982407). Comparison of adult morphology and larval behavior with other species shows that these moths belong to P. kauaulaensis  (Figs 10, 14). Unfortunately these specimens were sacrificed for molecular analysis, so that they cannot be added to the type series.