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Title: Conservation Status and Research on the Fabulous Green Sphinx of Kaua'i, Tinostoma smaragditis (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae), Including Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the Diverse Mesic Forests of Kaua'i, Hawai'i
Authors: Heddle, M.L.
Wood, K.R.
Asquith, A.
Gillespie, R.G.
Issue Date: Jan-2000
Publisher: University of Hawai'i Press
Citation: Heddle ML, Wood KR, Asquith A, Gillespie RG. 2000. Conservation status and research on the Fabulous Green Sphinx of Kaua'i, Tinostoma smaragditis (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae), including checklists of the vascular plants of the diverse mesic forests of Kaua'i, Hawai'i. Pac Sci 54(1): 1-9.
Abstract: In 1895, a moth was captured in a mountain home in Makaweli,
Kaua'i, that would captivate and elude entomologists for the next century. Tinostoma
smaragditis (Meyrick), aptly nicknamed the "Fabulous Green Sphinx
of Kaua'i" is a stunningly beautiful moth with green wings and thorax, pale
brown hind wings, and orange antennae. Eighteen individuals are known to
have been collected on Kaua'i. However, despite extensive searches in areas
around Koke'e, all the specimens discovered until the 1990s were incidental
catches, and the natural habitat and host plant of the moth remained unknown.
This study describes the results of extensive searches of the diverse mesic forests
with the aim of establishing range, habitat, and host-plant associations of the
Fabulous Green Sphinx. In February 1998 a male T smaragditis was attracted
to a mercury vapor light set up in the diverse mesic forest. Subsequently, one
other specimen was collected in a similar habitat type on another part of the
island. However, the host plant of the moth remains unknown. In this paper
we provide a history of collections, a summary of known biology, and a guide
to potential host plants, including checklists of vascular plants found in the diverse
mesic forests of two locations where T smaragditis was found, Kalalau
and Mahanaloa Valleys on Kaua'i.
ISSN: 0030-8870
Appears in Collections:Pacific Science Volume 54, Number 1, 2000

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