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Bogong Moth

Agrotis infusa


This grey-brown moth had a wing span of about 50 mm. It was resting with its wings tented. Each wing showed two small dark spots ringed with white and medial to this, each wing had a dark brown arrow-head mark pointing towards the trailing margin. The head, thorax and legs were covered with dense short grey setae.


Spotted under bright lights near a national park (Dandenong Ranges)


The Bogong Moth has an important place in Australian history. The moths breed in the alpine plains in the summer months and move to cooler mountainous parts and caves of the Alpine Ranges when the plains warm-up. They especially congregate around Mt Bogong (hence the common name) often resting in such large numbers that the indigenous people moved to the Alps during these months to collect and feast on these moths.
During these migratory flights some are blown into cities of Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne in huge numbers - something that disturbs some people!
The moths aestivate until autumn and move down to the plains to lay their eggs.
Larvae feed on varieties of brassicas, broad-leaved native weeds and some young cereal plants. They can destroy agricultural plants in large numbers and are therefore considered as pests.
Family: Noctuidae

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Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway a year ago

Thank you all for your lovely comments and Ashley, for the nomination. Wouldn't want to be caught in a plague of these but they have always fascinated me.

AshleyT a year ago

Your spotting has been nominated for the Spotting of the Week. The winner will be chosen by the Project Noah Rangers based on a combination of factors including: uniqueness of the shot, status of the organism (for example, rare or endangered), quality of the information provided in the habitat and description sections. There is a subjective element, of course; the spotting with the highest number of Ranger votes is chosen. Congratulations on being nominated!

DanielePralong a year ago

Amazing information Leuba! Thanks.

Thank you for all the information on this Moth...Amazing! I love that the indigenous people eat them...good source of protein and no farming... : )

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway a year ago

Thanks Jim. Indigenous people still live off the land in some parts and subsist on what is seasonal and available- less destructive than large-scale farming. There is great "bush tucker" -bush food, berries, leaves and nuts on undisturbed land but like you I probably won't go for moths unless desperate.

Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson a year ago

I do not think of moths as food...but when one is hungry, what-ever works! Nice spotting and summary, Leuba!

Neil Ross
Neil Ross a year ago

That was more than a chuckle. I had a jolly good laugh :D Thanks, Leuba.

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway a year ago

haha .. it's self-defining for some Aussies, they believe it's called Bogan Moth !

Neil Ross
Neil Ross a year ago

Lovely spotting, Leuba. Do you remember the last plague we had? It was particularly bad in Sydney. I wish they called it a bogan moth. That would give me a good chuckle ;)

Leuba Ridgway
Spotted by
Leuba Ridgway

Victoria, Australia

Lat: -37.89, Long: 145.31

Spotted on Jun 3, 2018
Submitted on Jul 27, 2018

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