November 25, 2014

1343 BOTSWANA - Moths

This postcard depicts a shaped miniature sheet comprising a series of stamps issued on July 19, 2000, Moths of Botswana:

Mopane moth / Gonimbrasia belina (35t) - is a moth of the Saturniidae family, which is found in much of Southern Africa. Its large edible caterpillar, the mopani or mopane worm (found on the mopane tree, Colophospermum mopane), is an important source of protein for millions of indigenous Southern Africans. Its wingspan is about 120mm. It is fawn through shades of green and brown to red, with two black and white bands isolating eye spots. Orange eyespot on each hind wing. Males have feathery antennae.

Wild silk moth / Gonometa rufobrunnae Aurivillius (70t)- is a moth of the Lasiocampidae family. Most of the Lasiocampidae are highly sexually dimorphic. It feeds on the mopane tree in southern Africa, and it is notable for producing a fine quality wild silk in its cocoon.

Speckled emperor moth / Gynanisa maja (P15) - is a moth of the Saturniidae family, which is found from South Africa to eastern Africa (up to Angola and Zambia), but it is absent from the south- western arid and winter rainfall regions. Its wingspan is 110-130mm. It is characterized by dense greyish-black speckling on forewings and large, ringed eyespots on rusty field on hindwings; males with very large, feathery antennae.

Crimson-speckled flunkey (Tiger moth) / Utetheisa pulchella (P1) - is a moth of the Arctiidae family, which is found in the tropics and subtropics of Africa and Asia, in a few places in coastal areas of the Mediterranean, in the Canaries and Madeira, and also in Australia. It migrates to the north and was occasionally found north of the Alps in Germany, northern France and the British Isles. Its wingspan is 29-42 mm, and the larvae feed on Forget-me-not, Echium, Borago and Anchusa species. It inhabits mainly coastal dunes, rocky areas, dry slopes and other warm, gappy vegetated habitats.

African moon moth / Argema mimosae (P2) - is a giant silk moth of the Saturniidae family, which is found widely in Eastern Africa and more locally in Southern Africa, including near the east coast of South Africa. Its wingspan is 100-120mm. Its forward wings have a distinctive grey-coloured 'furry' leading edge, giving a very rough surface, presumably for aerodynamic reasons. Apart from the eye-like markings on its wings, the colouring and shape of the wings give the appearance of a piece of foliage, especially the 'tail-like' structures which resemble a dried out leaf stem.

About the stamps

The stamps are part of 10th definitive series, issued on May 13, 2014, and comprising 14 values. The designs all feature local species of birds and the subject repeats the theme of some of the previous definitive issues.

Utetheisa pulchella (Linnaeus, 1758) - Lepidoptera and their ecology
The Emperor Moths of Namibia, by Rolf Oberprieler - Namibiana Buchdepot
Gynanisa maja - Wikipedia
Argema mimosae - Wikipedia
Gonimbrasia belina - Wikipedia
The Mopane Worm - Science in Africa
Gonometa postica - Wikipedia

Sender: ???
Sent from Gaborone (Botswana), on 25.09.2014

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