New Zealand Entomologist (2011) 34(1): 67–76
©New Zealand Entomological Society, Inc.

Research article
Lepidoptera of gumland heaths a threatened and rare ecosystem of northern New Zealand

R.J.B. Hoare 1*

1 Landcare Research, Private Bag 92170, Auckland, New Zealand. E-mail: hoarer@landcareresearch.co.nz
*Corresponding author.

Abstract: The Lepidoptera fauna of gumland heaths, an ecosystem restricted to northern New Zealand, is reviewed. A total of 161 species (one including two subspecies) is recorded from the 14 sites surveyed; all are listed. Significant finds amongst endemic and adventive Lepidoptera are discussed. Two new endemic species were collected during the survey (Paramorpha new species 1 (Carposinidae) and Megacraspedus new species 1 (Gelechiidae)). Four species and one subspecies of adventive Lepidoptera are recorded here for the first time from mainland New Zealand, although the gumland records do not constitute the first or only records from this country: Cosmopterix attenuatella (Cosmopterigidae), Lepidoscia protorna (Psychidae), Ephestiopsis oenobarella (Pyralidae: Phycitinae), Pantydia sparsa (Noctuidae: Catocalinae) and Uresiphita polygonalis ornithopteralis (Crambidae: Pyraustinae). Gumland sites are provisionally compared on the basis of Lepidoptera species richness and number of specialist species recorded, and Whakaruangangana, near Kaikohe, is so far considered the site of highest conservation significance.

Keywords: Gumland; Gumland heath; endemic; immigrant; adventive; Lepidoptera; rare ecosystem