The Saturniidae of Vietnam
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compiled by Wolfgang A. Nässig

The fauna of the Saturniidae of Vietnam is still under study (Brechlin, Naumann, Paukstadt, Brosch, Nässig et al.). The checklist presented here is primarily based on a publication by Nässig (1994), who counted at that time 29 species. Since 1994, several further species have been discovered. Those additions which have already been published as new species are included here (with details added in footnotes); also some additional species which are not new to science and have recently been found are listed here. The references can be found at the end of this page. At present about 40 (or even more?) species of Saturniidae are known from Vietnam; research is still in progress.
Last update of this page ca. 2002; presently no time, a new update will follow later ...

Recently, a preliminary fauna of the adjacent countries Laos and Cambodia was published; see below and directly here.

For the Brahmaeidae of Vietnam, see here.

Preliminary Checklist of Vietnamese Saturniidae   ()

Important Notes in Advance/Disclaimer:
  1. No new taxa are proposed here (because a website is an inadequate place for such). Information provided here which deviates from the 1994 checklist and other publications (see references) reflects the personal opinion of the author (W. A. Nässig) and may be premature; studies are in preparation and will later be published in print (by different authors). This page is primarily intended to promote discussion based on old and some new data. Any status changes or similar taxonomic matter proposed here are not validly published!
  2. Regarding using this website as reference, please read the “Important Note in Advance” on the first page of the Saturniidae Research. The present webpage is no permanently available reference! It will be changed as often as it appears just to be appropiate (without further notice), and new information or publications will be included as soon as possible. — Therefore, read this page more often to always see the most recent data and opinions!
  3. The order of genera within the tribes (following the 1994 checklist) and of species within the genera is mostly preliminary and tentative; it does not necessarily reflect serious phylogenetic ideas or studies.
  4. For comparison, see also the recent publication by Brosch et al. (1999, references below) on the Saturniidae and Brahmaeidae of the adjacent areas of Laos and Cambodia. See also in the WWW under the URL, where the full list of species with comments and references will be found soon.

Superfamily Bombycoidea Latreille, 1802
Family Saturniidae Boisduval, [1837] 1834

Subfamily Salassinae Michener, 1949

Genus Salassa Moore, 1859
Salassa lemaii Le Moult, 1933
Salassa tonkiniana Le Moult, 1933 (Footnote 1)
Salassa sp.?  (Footnote 2)
Salassa fansipana Brechlin, 1997 (Footnote 3)
Subfamily Saturniinae Boisduval, [1837] 1834

Tribe Attacini Blanchard, 1840
Genus Attacus Linnaeus, 1767
Attacus atlas (Linnaeus, 1758)
Genus Archaeoattacus Watson, 1914
Archaeoattacus edwardsii (White, 1859)
Genus Samia Hübner, [1819]
most likely more than one species, yet unidentified (Footnote 4)
Tribe Saturniini Boisduval, [1837]
Genus Rhodinia Staudinger, 1892
Rhodinia newara Moore, 1872 (Footnote 5)
Rhodinia rudloffi Brechlin, 2001 (Footnote 26)
Genus Actias Leach, 1815
Actias chapae (Mell, 1950) (Footnote 6)
Actias rhodopneuma Röber, 1925
Actias dubernardi (Oberthür, 1897)  (Footnote 7)
Actias selene (Hübner, 1806) (Footnote 8)
Actias sinensis (Walker, 1855) (Footnote 9)
Actias australovietnama Brechlin, 2000 (Footnote 24)
Actias maenas (Doubleday, 1847)
Genus Saturnia Schrank, 1802
Subgenus Rinaca Walker, 1855
Saturnia (Rinaca) zuleika Hope, 1843
Saturnia (Rinaca) thibeta  Westwood, 1853
Saturnia (Rinaca) simla Westwood, 1847 (Footnote 10)
Saturnia (Rinaca) naumanni Brechlin, 2001 (Footnote 25)
Saturnia (Rinaca) cachara Moore, 1872 (Footnote 11)
Saturnia (Rinaca) anna Moore, 1865
Subgenus Saturnia Schrank, 1802
Saturnia (Saturnia) pyretorum Westwood, 1847 (Footnote 12)
Genus Loepa Moore, [1860]
Loepa anthera Jordan, 1911 (Footnote 13)
Loepa miranda Moore, 1865 (Footnote 14)
Loepa roseomarginata Brechlin, 1997 (Footnote 15)

Loepa diversiocellata Bryk, 1944
Loepa ?kuangtungensis Mell, 1938 (Footnote 16)
Loepa sikkima Moore, 1865 (ssp.?) (Footnote 17)

Genus Cricula Walker, 1855
Cricula trifenestrata (Helfer, 1837)
Cricula jordani Bryk, 1944
Cricula vietnama Brechlin, Nässig & Naumann, 1999 (Footnote 18) — see also here
Genus Lemaireia Nässig & Holloway, 1987
Lemaireia luteopeplus aureopeplus Nässig & Holloway, 1988
Lemaireia inexspectata Nässig, 1996 (Footnote 19)
Genus Solus Watson, 1913
Solus parvifenestratus sinjaevi Nässig, 1994
Genus Antheraea Hübner, [1819]
Subgenus Antheraeopsis Wood-Mason, 1886
Antheraea (Antheraeopsis) spec. 1 (Footnote 20)
Antheraea (Antheraeopsis) spec. 2 (Footnote 20)
Subgenus Antheraea Hübner, [1819]
Antheraea (Antheraea) frithi Moore, 1859, sensu lato (Footnote 21)
Antheraea (Antheraea) platessa Rothschild, 1903
Antheraea (Antheraea) (pernyi) roylii Moore, 1859 (Footnote 22)
it is utmost likely that further species of this subgenus are inhabiting Vietnam (Footnote 23)

Footnotes (with comments by the author, W. A. Nässig):
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  1. The identity and status of this species is not yet clear (see Brechlin 1997 b). Nässig (1994) listed this species under the name “Salassa ?thespis (Leech, 1890)”. Back to the text
  2. It is (a) not yet clear whether this is a species distinct from S. tonkiniana at all, and (b) its identity remains open presently (see Brechlin 1997 b). Back to the text
  3. This species was described by R. Brechlin (1997 b). Back to the text
  4. The genus Samia is presently under revision (Peigler & Naumann, in prep.). There are probably more than one species of the genus living in Vietnam, but their identity will only be assessed by the results of this revision. Naumann & Peigler (2001) described Samia wangi from southern mainland China, Vietnam, Taiwan and Hainan. Back to the text
  5. In Nässig (1994), the name grigauti Le Moult, 1933 was treated as a synonym of newara Moore, 1872. At that time, no actual specimens of Rhodinia from Vietnam were seen by the author. Now, after actual specimens were received, it appears that there are some differences between the Himalayan and Vietnamese populations. The status of these differences remains to be assessed; perhaps grigauti might be a real subspecies. Back to the text
  6. The lectotype of the taxon chapae was designated by Nässig & Brechlin (1995). Back to the text
  7. There remains some doubt whether this species really belongs to the fauna of Vietnam. No recent specimens of A. dubernardi with reliable data are known from Vietnam (see Nässig 1994). Back to the text
  8. Actias selene is probably a species-complex of unclear identities. Back to the text
  9. Tentative naming; this species was repeatedly (by different authors) listed under the name heterogyna Mell, 1914. However, the probable type specimen of sinensis in BMNH (London) fits quite well to Mell’s heterogyna (Nässig, unpublished). Therefore, it appears likely that these two taxa may be just no more than synonyms. Nevertheless, the situation within the sinensis-group (at least consisting of sinensis, laotiana Testout, 1936 and angulocaudata Naumann & Bouyer, 1998) remains to be revised. — I do not follow here the opinion expressed by Naumann & Bouyer (1998) that, based on genitalia morphology, sinensis and angulocaudata might belong to different species-groups within Actias; the similarities in external morphology are very convincing and do not at all appear to be symplesiomorphies, while it is known that closely related species of Actias may sometimes have quite distinct genitalia; similar cases are also, for example, commonplace in the genus LemaireiaBack to the text
  10. Nässig (1994) already expected this species for the fauna of Vietnam, and in the meanwhile there were also some specimens of Saturnia simla collected (e.g., in coll. W. Nässig in Senckenberg). Back to the text
  11. This taxon was described as a separate species microcaligula Nässig, 1994 by Nässig (1994). In the meanwhile, with more material available, it appears that it is probably no more than a small-sized form of cachara Moore, 1872. Evidently the Vietnamese material of this taxon which was given to me between 1993 and ca. 2000 was selected; the big specimens were taken out before I had seen them, and I received only small stuff. These small specimens obviously also show some slight genitalia differences caused by the smaller body size. The synonymy of microcaligula with cachara was published by Brosch et al. (1999: 47). Now I largely agree with this synonymy. Back to the text
  12. Possibly roseata de Joannis, 1929 is an appropiate subspecies name for the N-Vietnamese population (compare Nässig 1994). Back to the text
  13. As was shown by Brosch et al. (1999), the type series of the closely related Loepa oberthuri Leech, 1890 was most likely mixed, and Brosch et al. (1999) designated a lectotype for oberthuri (nec “oberthueri”, as was written in error by me in 1994: 349) in accordance with the present concepts of the two species. Back to the text
  14. This species was already expected for the fauna of Vietnam by Nässig (1994), and in the meanwhile there were also some specimens collected (e.g., in coll. W. Nässig in Senckenberg). Back to the text
  15. This species was described by R. Brechlin (1997 b). Back to the text
  16. L. kuangtungensis is probably the correct name for this small Vietnamese and South Chinese relative of the Himalayan species L. katinka Westwood, 1848 (Nässig 1994 and unpublished). The true L. katinka is restricted to the Himalaya area.Back to the text
  17. A few specimens of L. sikkima are known in the meanwhile from Vietnam. The subspecific classification of this taxon requires further studies. Back to the text
  18. This species was recently described in a paper by Nässig et al. (1999). Back to the text — See also here.
  19. This second Vietnamese species of the genus Lemaireia was described by Nässig (1996). Back to the text 
  20. It is now absolutely clear both from external and genitalia morphology that there are [at least] two distinct species of the subgenus Antheraeopsis in Vietnam. But as not all type specimens of relevant taxa have been examined so far, the correct names of these two species must remain open for the time being. A revision of the group is in preparation (Paukstadt, Brosch et al.). Back to the text 
  21. This is the most problematic species-group within the nominotypical subgenus. The identities of the species involved as well as the differences between these species are still under study. It is likely, but proof is lacking thus far, that there is more than one species involved. (See also below in the last footnote.) Back to the text 
  22. The name roylii Moore, 1859 has priority over the spelling variant roylei Moore, [1860] 1858–59 (U. Brosch). — I still believe (see Nässig 1994) that A. pernyi Guérin-Méneville, 1855 and A. roylii are conspecific, in spite of the different chromosome numbers. However, an analysis of this case (best by alloenzyme electrophoresis or DNA-PCR or similar methods) is still lacking. Back to the text 
  23. At least Antheraea (A.) helferi Moore, 1859 and/or A. (A.) larissa Westwood, 1847 can as well be expected from Vietnam, most likely further species. — The “species” of Antheraea (Antheraea) listed by Brosch et al. (1999) for Laos and Cambodia (and also in some other publications within this Supplementum issue of the journal) in several cases lack proven evidence for really being separate biospecies or even morphospecies. However, further studies (whenever possible with adequate methods like pheromone analyses, alloenzyme electrophoresis, DNA fingerprints or similar) will surely result in a better knowledge about this complex group. Classical studies on external and genitalia morphology do at present not offer much help within this complicated group. Back to the text 
  24. Brechlin (2000: 33) described Actias australovietnama as a separate species from southern Vietnam. This taxon is quite close to Actias angulocaudata Naumann & Bouyer, 1998, from China, and its status requires further research.  Back to the text
  25. This new species was described recently by Brechlin (2001a: 90). Saturnia (Rinaca) naumanni belongs to the species-complex of S. (R.) boisduvalii Eversmann, 1846 and appears to represent the southernmost member of this group.  Back to the text
  26. This new species was described recently by Brechlin (2001b: 125). Rhodinia rudloffi is externally quite similar to Rh. newara, but has good differences in male genitalia; it also shows characters of the smaller species Rh. verecunda Inoue, 1984 from Taiwan  Back to the text 

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  • Brechlin, R. (1997 a): Saturnia (Rinaca) witti n. sp., eine neue Saturniide aus Nepal (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 17 (4): 423–433.
  • Brechlin, R. (1997 b): Zwei neue Saturniiden aus dem Gebirgsmassiv des Fan Si Pan (nördliches Vietnam): Salassa fansipana n. sp. and Loepa roseomarginata n. sp. (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 18 (1): 75–87.
  • Brechlin, R. (2000): Eine neue Art der Gattung Actias Leach, 1815 aus Südvietnam: Actias australovietnama n. sp. (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 21 (1): 33–37.
  • Brechlin, R. (2001a): Einige Anmerkungen zur Gattung Saturnia Schrank, 1802 mit Beschreibung von zwei neuen Arten (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 22 (2): 89–100.
  • Brechlin, R. (2001b): Rhodinia rudloffi n. sp., eine neue Saturniide aus dem nördlichen Vietnam (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 22 (2): 124–128.
  • Brosch, U., Naumann, S., Paukstadt, L.H., Paukstadt, U., Tcherniak, I., & Beeke, M. (1999 [28. December]): Anmerkungen zur Brahmaeiden- und Saturniidenfauna von Laos und Kambodscha (Lepidoptera: Bombycoidea). — Galathea, Ber. Krs. Nürnberger Entomol., Suppl. 6: 33–58.
  • Nässig, W. A. (1994): Vorläufige Anmerkungen zur Saturniiden- und Brahmaeidenfauna von Vietnam mit Neubeschreibungen (Lepidoptera). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 15 (3): 339–358. — [With references to earlier publications.]
  • Nässig, W. A. (1996): A new, unexpected species of Lemaireia Nässig & Holloway, 1987 from the South of Vietnam (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 17 (3): 275–282.
  • Nässig, W. A., & Brechlin, R. (1995): Designation of the lectotype of Actias chapae Mell, 1950 (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt/Main, N.F. 16 (2/3): 309–310.
  • Nässig, W. A., Brechlin, R., & Naumann, S. (1999): Notes on the Cricula Walker 1855 of Vietnam, with description of a new species (Insecta, Lepidoptera, Saturniidae). — Senck. biol. 78 (1/2) : 183–192.
  • Nässig, W. A., & Treadaway, C. G. (1998): The Brahmaeidae (Lepidoptera) of the Philippines. — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt/Main, N.F. Suppl. 17: 425–440.
  • Naumann, S., & Bouyer, T. (1998): Actias angulocaudata n. sp., eine neue Saturniide aus der Volksrepublik China (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Entomol. Z. 108 (6): 224–231.
  • Naumann, S., & Peigler, R. S. (2001): Four new species of the silkmoth genus Samia (Lepidoptera: Saturniidae). — Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, Frankfurt am Main, N.F. 22 (2): 75–83.
  • Testout, H. (1936): Contribution a l’Étude des Saturnioïdes (Lépidopt. Hetéroc.). A. Description d’une forme d’Actias de l’Indochine Française. — Ann. Soc. Linn. Lyon 79 (1935): 40–51, 3 pls.

© 1999–2002, 2009 by W. A. Nässig — compiled April 1999, published 1. September 1999, last update 18. January 2002, 12. XI. 2009
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