The nematodes' life cycles demonstrate an adaptation to the migration of the bogong moths, as they are dependent on bogong moths returning to the same aestivation sites.  Larvae achieve a maximum length of 50 mm (2.0 in). Moth population inflation. One young is born after a gestation period of 12-14 months and will continue to suckle from the mother for about 18 months.  The parasites are transmitted to bogong moths through water; the early instar larval nematodes reside in the debris of the cave floors of common aestivation sites, and crawl up to reach the moths through trickles of water coming down the walls. Not surprisingly, this remarkable natural phenomenon has not gone unnoticed by human observers.  During the summer, hot temperatures occur and grasses, which are an unfavourable diet for bogong moth larvae, overtake pastures and make up the majority of the plants occupying the pastures. The life cycle or life history of Butterflies and Moths is:- The Egg or Ovum, The Caterpillar or Larva, The Chrysalis or Pupa and finally the Adult Butterfly or Moth (the Imago).  Little raven, currawong and Richard's pipit congregations form to feast on bogong moths as they travel from aestivation sites during migration.  Attacks on a wide variety of cultivated crops have been seen, with plants such as Medicago species, wheat, cabbages, cauliflowers, silver beet, peas, and potatoes all recorded being consumed by bogong moth caterpillars. Until then their breeding grounds had been a mystery.  Since the bogong moths do not feed at their aestivation sites, they had absorbed arsenic from lowland feeding sites as larvae and subsequently transported it over long distances into the mountains. , Adult bogong moths have an overall dark brown colouration, with a dark stripe interrupted by two light-coloured spots on the wings, distinguishing it from other moths. The first moths that arrive occupy the deepest and darkest locations, using their fore tarsi to grip onto the rock faces, and aggregations form around these initial areas, with moths arriving later settling for less ideal areas with more sunlight, higher temperatures, and decreased humidity. , During the spring migration, bogong moths gregariously aggregate with densities reaching 17,000 moths per square metre (10.8 square feet) within caves, crevices, and other areas hidden from the sunlight. , Bogong moth populations are primarily located across southern Australia, west of the Great Dividing Range. Ecology and Life Cycle.  While some water drinking has been observed, no evidence of copulation or active foraging has been found during these periods of activity. The Bogong moth may look unassuming, but it is a very important creature in the south-east of Australia. , The moth's name, bogong, is derived from the Australian Aboriginal Dhudhuroa word bugung, meaning brown moth.  Incubation times vary depending on temperature, with eggs hatching after a period of 4–7 days in laboratory conditions.  He described the moth as having blackish brown hind wings.  During the autumn and winter it is found in southern Queensland, western New South Wales, western Victoria, and also in South and Western Australia. Breeding: As mentioned above, the main activities in the life of a Bogong moth happen in the plains, from where the adults migrate to the high mountains during the summer. Home › Other › Australiana › Is Canberra’s latest bogong moth sculpture the next big thing?.  The large amount of light and noise present can also attract moths towards cities. The Bogong moth Agrotis infusa is a multivoltine species (i.e., having the potential for several broods within a season) with the potential for three overlapping generations in favorable conditions where there is access to larval food plants (annual dicotyledons) throughout the spring and summer (Figure 5, Common, 1954; McQuillan et al., 2007).  However, this maturation is delayed due to the lack of larval food sources during the summer season.  In autumn, the moths migrate again and return to their breeding grounds, laying eggs and dying. Figure 1. These brown to blackish moths have a wingspan of approximately 45 millimetres.  The population within each aestivation site fluctuates throughout the summer due to moth mortality and the departure and arrival of moths either migrating further south for aestivation or north to return to breeding grounds.  Additionally, bogong moths may use an internal magnetic compass to aid in navigation, as seen in the similar monarch butterfly. Now it appears as though some of the bizarre fictional accounts are being realised in our own backyard, with the bogong moth a species with a similar life cycle to the monarch.  However, in areas with favourable conditions, bogong moths do not have to migrate during the summer. High This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale. , Physical Map of Australia, special advertising feature of Australia.com on pg 16, National Geographic magazine, May 2006, Washington DC, "ParlInfo - Bogong moths and Parliament House", "Mount Bogong: 2958: Historical Information", "Long distance transport of arsenic by migrating Bogong moths from agricultural lowlands to mountain ecosystems", "Mount Bogong: 2957: Historical Information".  While levels within each individual moth are small, the sheer quantity of moths in the area led to a concentration of the pollutant to damaging levels in the environment. Bogong Moth was once brightly coloured like our native wildflowers, according to one Aboriginal Dreaming. GA This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale. The Bogong moths at this stage of their cycle were collected by local aboriginals as food.  Adults emerge from the soil chambers and shortly after begin migration.  This leads to delayed breeding, as bogong moths are multivoltine and so can raise multiple generations.  Permanent aestivation sites are generally found in higher altitudes of 1500 metres (4920 ft) or above, with the largest, most stable aggregations found on the summits of mountains such as Mt.  Adult bogong moths are active at night, and have different seasonal behaviors.  During aestivation, the bogong moths remain dormant for several months, possibly delaying development due to the lower temperatures. CLICK HERE FOR THE MAIN INDEX OF SPECIES ETC. , While the moths mostly remain dormant during aestivation, there are some periods of activity within the aggregation which are correlated to changes in light intensity. and Hexamermis cavicola sp.nov. , Other biologists and ecologists have pointed to the dramatic effect on animals which feed on the moths, which are an important source of protein for wildlife, including the threatened mountain pygmy possum as well as other insectivorous mammals and birds.
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