Cone Case Moth
Tower Case Moth
Less-stick Case Moth


Case Moths, Bag Moths - Subfamily Psychinae

Family Psychidae 

This page contains pictures and information about Case Moths and Bag Moths in subfamily Psychinae that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
Case Moth Caterpillars usually hide inside the mobile case. The case is made of silk and host plant materials or a few species mixed with grains of sand. Each species make case in different shapes. Most of them feed on a variety of plants. When rest they stick the top opening on stem and hang their bag vertically.
When the caterpillar feeds, it attached the upper end of its case with silk to stem of plant. The caterpillar cut the silk to move the case. Psychinae caterpillars feed on different plants include herbs, shrubs and trees.  

Faggot Case Moth
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Clania ignobilis, case length 40mm
This species makes cylindrical case with parallel attached sticks. The case look the same same as the species below except one or two of their sticks used are much longer then the other sticks. They are easily recognised. Click here for more information and pictures. 
Stick Case Moth
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Clania lewinii (former Clania tenuis), case length 45mm, young case length 20mm
This Case Moths uses sticks of similar size attached in parallel around its silk case. We usually found this Case moth bag attached to a large Gum tree trunk. Unlike the species we discussed above, this species makes cylindrical case with sticks of similar length. Please visit this page for more details.
Less-stick Case Moth
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Trigonocyttara clandestina, case length 40mm
From reference information, the female of this species is winged. The larvae form a cylindrical case with few twigs attached lengthwise. They feeds on Eucalyptus and Acacia.  
Saunders' Case Moth, Large Bagworm
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Metura elongatus, (Oiketicus elongatus), case length 90mm
We found this case moth caterpillar feeding on our palm tree. We kept it for a few weeks. It fed during the evening  everyday. When disturbed it retreated back into its case. It is a large caterpillar with 10mm in cross diameter. It body is orange-brown in colour with black eyes pattern on its thorax. For more pictures and information please also visit this page.
Smooth Case Moth
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Oiketicus herrichii, bag length 50mm 
We found this Bagworm in Anstead Forest on Mar 2009. We interested in how the caterpillar look like so we took it home and kept for a few days. We put this Bagworm back to our backyard after taking the above photo. The caterpillar builds smooth silk case without any decorations. Check this page for more information.
Common Leaf Case Moth, Leaf Bagworm
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Hyalarcta huebneri, 50mm in length.                    Young Leaf Case Moth, 10mm length
Leaf Case Moths are common in Brisbane eucalyptus forest. They can be found on most kind of trees, including the Eucalyptus and Acacia. The appearance of Leaf Case Moth's case can be extremely variable. More information about this case moth can be found in this page.
Ribbed Case Moth, Ribbed Bagworm
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Hyalarcta nigrescens, bag length 50mm 
The bag was found hanging from gum tree leaf. Unlike other species in this family, this Bag Moth caterpillars make their case with silk only, not using any plant materials. All bags they made has seven prominent longitudinal ribs. More pictures and information can be found in this page.

1. Insects of Australia and New Zealand - R. J. Tillyard, Angus & Robertson, Ltd, Sydney, 1926, p435.
2. Moths of Australia - I. F. B. Common, Melbourne University Press, 1990, p174.
3. Insects of Australia - CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University Press, 2nd Edition 1991, p848. 
4. PSYCHIDAE of Australia - Caterpillars of Australian Moths - Don Herbison-Evans & Stella Crossley, 2007.
5. Case moths, bag moths or bagworms - Chris Burwell, Queensland Museum, 2006. 
7. Northern Territory Insects, A Comprehensive Guide CD - Graham Brown, 2009. 

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Last updated: August 09, 2011.