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New species of Thitarodes Viette, 1968 ghost moth from Kumaun Himalaya, India (Lepidoptera: Hepialidae)

Grehan, John R.; Mielke, Carlos G.C.; Basu, Dipendra Nath; Negi, Chandra Singh; Sharma, Pardeep Kumar; Kunte, Krushnamegh

A new species of Thitarodes Viette is described from the montane habitat of Balmiya in the western Himalaya of Uttarakhand, India. Genitalia are described and illustrated for male and female specimens. The species is distinctive for its sinuate-shaped valva of the male genitalia and this feature distinguishes it from all other Thitarodes species where the male genitalia is described and illustrated. The male and female genitalia also distinguish this species from the other fiveThitarodes species recorded from the Himalaya. Based on current records for the harvesting of the Ophiocordyceps fungus that parasitises Thitarodes in this region, the moth appears to be widespread in alpine habitats of at least the eastern regions of Uttarakhand, which currently represents the western-most geographic limit for the distribution of Thitarodes.

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