Three new species of geometrid moths have been recently described through the collaborative work of the French taxonomist, Claude Tautel and UPLB Museum of Natural History curator, Dr. Aimee Lynn A. Barrion-Dupo.

The first species, Albinospila juancarlosi, was first collected in Banaue, Ifugao in 2012 and further collected from several localities in Luzon and Romblon islands. It has been named after the current director of the UPLB Museum of Natural History Dr. Juan Carlos T. Gonzalez. According to the authors, this species resembles the larger A. variifrons except in the color of the border of the wings. A. variifrons was previously placed under the South American genus Racheospila, and has been re-classified under the genus Albinospila.

The authors also described two other new moth species which belonged to the genus Comostola, namely: C. stueningi and C. romblonensis. C. stueningi was collected in 1993 from the forests of Mt. Kitangland in Bukidnon, Mindanao and named after Dr. Dieter Stüning of the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig in Bonn, Germany. The second species, C. romblonensis, collected in 2014 is known only from the island of Sibuyan, province of Romblon to which they dedicated the name of the species.

"These moths that we described may look alike but the characters of their genitalia and other features such as color and patterns separate them from the others," said Barrion-Dupo. She further added that the current work is part of the Museum's effort to document the rich biodiversity of the Philippines, especially the previously unexplored areas.

"The number of geometrid moths of the Philippines is underestimated. We suspect that there are more species that we have not yet seen or described and this underscores the need to conduct more intensive and taxonomic surveys to collect additional specimens," Barrion-Dupo added.

Their paper is published in Antenor 4 (2), 2017: 141-146. Antenor is a journal of tropical lepidopterology studies published by Alexanor in Paris, France.


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