Moth of the Day: Parakoka - Orthoclydon praefactata

From the desk of Dr Anderson.......

Ko Parakoka Te Pepe Nui o te Rā - Moth of the Day Orthoclydon praefactata

Whakatauki - Me te upoko tūkoukou - Like the chrysalis of the Spinx moth (used when likening something to especially fine weaving).

An endemic New Zealand moth, parakoka is responsible for the long thin windows on the underside of the harakeke leaves.  It is a beautiful bright white moth with large silky wings, found throughout New Zealand all summer. Parakoka is in the Geometrid (Tāwhana) family - the caterpillars have the characteristic "bent like a bow / rainbow" shape as they move.

Orthoclydon praefactata features in Dr Robert's (Landcare Research) Photographic Guide to Moths & Butterflies of New Zealand with a beautiful photo by Oliver Ball (the bright white colour morph) and in the Andrew Crowe - Which New Zealand Insect? (the white with buff edges colour morph).  The moth also features on several of our Puka Whakamārama o Te Pepe Nui - Beginner's Guide to the Macro Moths series.

Ahi Pepe | MothNet on the airwaves - radio update

Episode 05:  Kā Kaka Tipu, presented by Jaz, Margarita and our guest scientist Dr Bronwyn Lowe, was fabulous.

The show includes a recording of the Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ōtepoti senior class trip to the Otago Museum to view Kā Kaka Tipu in the Takata Whenua gallery. Followed by a trip to Dr Lowe's lab at the University of Otago were we look at various Kā Kaka Tipu under the School's two dissecting microscopes (purchased through funding won by Whaea Tiahuia last year) and the POLARISING Microscope in the lab

Online shop

Badges are available for this species and many others from the Ahi Pepe | MothNet online shop or through the "shop now" button on our Facebook page

Parakoka - Moth of the Day Individual Badges or all six variants