Asota heliconia (Aganaid Moth, Tropical Tiger Moth)
John and I always get so excited when we noticed a moth or butterfly inside our home or outside at our front yard.
This beauty was a silent immobile resident in our home for three full days and nights. It was not deterred at all by our presence as we go about our chores in the kitchen.
Finally on the fourth morning, I shifted it to our courtyard and hoped that it’ll be happier there. Noticed that by early afternoon it had flown away. Good-bye and thank you, Asota heliconia for gracing our home with your presence.
This beautiful moth has forewings with a narrow central white wedge that is surrounded in dark greyish-brown. The white hindwings are also bordered greyish-brown.
Besides, it has an orange colour head and thorax with several black spots on the thorax. The upper side of thorax is hairy.
The body is a contrasting orangy-yellow with several black spots. The wingspan is 52-60 mm wide.
- Scientific name: Asota heliconia (Linnaeus, 1758); (Other names: Phalaena heliconia, Noctua dama)
- Common names: Aganaids, Tropical Tiger Moth, Snouted Tiger Moth
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths)
- Family: Noctuidae
- Subfamily: Aganainae
- Genus: Asota
- Species: A. heliconia
Habitat: Abundant in the lowlands and secondary forest areas. Also, in small numbers from altitudes up to 1900 m.
Food plants: Larva feeds mainly on the young leaves of the Averrhoa species, especially the Averrhoa bilimbi (Belimbing Asam in Malay) that is noted as its host-plant.
Last edit: June 15, 2016