Agrotis ceropachoides Guenée, 1868

Owlet moth



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Euxoa ceropachoides Guenée, 1868; Euxoa cerapachoides Guenée, 1868 [orth. error used by Pawson & Emberson, 2000]


Conservation Status

Last record: early 1860's (Patrick, 2014)

Rediscovered: 4 July 2012 (Patrick, 2014)


Previously thought to have disappeared after only a single record:

"Another likely candidate for extinction is “Euxoaceropachoides (Noctuidae), which has not been definitely collected since it was described in 1868; its Canterbury lowland habitat is much altered; however, it may conceivably have been overlooked amongst populations of the variable and very similar “E.admirationis."

(Stringer et al., 2012:124)


But later records have since been retrospectively established thanks to its rediscovery (Patrick, 2014:31):

"Richard Fereday died in 1899, and no more captures of this moth under the correct name appear to have been made until the author (BP) rediscovered it on 4 July 2012. As stated above, part of the reason for that is that the holotype is a dull grey colour morph which is not typical for the species, and this was also the variety of the species illustrated by Hudson (1898). We now know that this variety makes up less than 10% of males."



Mid Canterbury, South Island, New Zealand


"it is clear from Hudson (1898) that Fereday discovered the species at Rakaia, and as this is the only locality noted, it must stand as the type locality... The  type locality can be further defined as the Oakleigh Station farm of Fereday’s brother. The type locality should be noted as: “Oakleigh Station, Rakaia River mouth”, as Oakley Farm is still shown on current maps and has a close connection to both Fereday Island and Rakaia Island, where natural vegetation still exists."

(Patrick, 2014:30-31)


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Guenée, Achille. (1868). New species, &c, of heterocerous Lepidoptera from Canterbury, New Zealand, collected by Mr. R. W. Fereday (Continued from page 6). Entomologist's monthly magazine 5: 38-43.


Other references:

Dugdale, John S. (1988). Lepidoptera - annotated catalogue, and keys to family-group taxa. Fauna of New Zealand 14. DSIR, Auckland. 262 pp.

Hoare, Robert J. B., Dugdale, John S., Edwards, E. D., Gibbs, G. W., Patrick, Brian H., Hitchmough, R. A. and Rolfe, J. R. (2017). Conservation status of New Zealand butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera), 2015. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 20. Department of Conservation, Wellington. 13 pp.

Hudson, G. V. (1898). New Zealand moths and butterflies (Macrolepidoptera). London: Newman & Co. 144 pp. + 13 pl.

Patrick, Brian H. (2013). Investigation of two data deficient moth taxa: Agrotis ceropachoides and Orocrambus sophronellus. Wildland Consultants Report R3162, Rotorua. 11 pp.

Patrick, Brian H. (2014). Investigation of a data deficient moth taxon: Agrotis ceropachoides. The Weta 46: 27-37.

Pawson, S. M. and Emberson, R. M. (2000). The conservation status of invertebrates in Canterbury. Conservation Advisory Science Notes No. 320, Department of Conservation, Wellington. 16 pp.

Stringer, I. A. N., Hitchmough, R. A., Dugdale, John S., Edwards, E., Hoare, R. J. B. and Patrick, Brian H. (2012). The conservation status of New Zealand Lepidoptera. New Zealand Entomologist 35(2): 120-127. doi:10.1080/00779962.2012.686316


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