Cone Case Moth
Tower Case Moth
Less-stick Case Moth


Common Leaf Case Moth - Hyalarcta huebneri

Family Psychidae

This page contains information and pictures about Common Leaf Case Moths that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.

Case length 50mm, Mar 2008, Karawatha Forest                                                                                      
Leaf Case Moth is also known as Leaf Bagworm. The Caterpillars live in a silken case, to which they attach leaf or twigs to cover it. The Leaf Case Moth caterpillars seem to feed on the leaves of many different plant, hence, covered their bag with different plants materials.
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The appearance of Leaf Case Moth's case can be extremely variable. The appearance depends on the host plants that the caterpillar chooses.  However, the Leaf Case Moth bag can be distinguished from other case moth bags by they covered their bag COMPLETELY and hang down LOOSELY with plant materials, no silken case is exposed. Also their bag is broadest in the middle, tapering to each end.  
Leaf Case Moths are common in Brisbane eucalyptus forest. They can be found on most kind of trees, including the Eucalyptus and Acacia. The female adult is wingless and never leave her case. The male is black in colour with transparent wings and dark antenna. From reference information the caterpillar has 6 instars stages within 10 months before pupation. 
From the reference information, The caterpillar has 6 larval instars; the final instars in the male does not feed. Eggs hatch on late summer, they took a year to grow, pupate in the next summer season.

Leaf Case Moth covered with Gum leaves 

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This case moth's bag found hanging on trees near Eight Mile Plains in Brisbane. The second picture shows the moth had gone and leave with an empty pupa. Our visitor sent us a email advise that there are also many similar moth's bag found in bushland near Manly, Brisbane. 
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Later we found this Leaf Case Moths are common in Brisbane eucalyptus forest. 
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Young Leaf Case Moth, 10mm length
As most other Case Moths, Leaf Case Moth Larvae are leaf miner in their early stage. 
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Leaf Case Moth covered with plant material on ground 

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Bag length 20mm
This is a relatively small case moth bag. It was found on a gum tree trunk. 

Leaf Case Moth covered with Wattle leaves 

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Bag length 40mm
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This case moth bag was found hanging on a Acacia tree. It was empty, i.e., the larva had turn into an adult moth and leave this empty case. 

Leaf Case Moth covered with Banksia leaves 

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Bag length 20mm
This case moth bag is still very small. The caterpillar is still mining the leaf surface instead of eating the whole leaf. In this family, more caterpillars are leaf-miners when they were young.

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Case length 20mm 

1. Hyalarcta huebneri - Caterpillars of Australian Moths - Don Herbison-Evans & Stella Crossley, 2005.
2. Moths of Australia - I. F. B. Common, Melbourne University Press, 1990, p180, fig51.6.

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Last updated: July 17, 2011.