Demonstration of an Underwing-Moth

Multimedia Resource

Assembled by
Joseph G. Kunkel, Professor, Biology Department
Theodore D. Sargent, Professor, Biology Department
with the cooperation of
Ute Bargmann, Library Assistant, Special Collections;
Larry Feldman, Librarian, Biological Sciences Library
University of Massachusetts at Amherst
CD-ROM version 1.0

| Goals & Approach | Progress | Bibliography | Programmed examples |
| Historic Keys | Lists | Framed Catocala | Other Moths | Whole Plates |
| Harold Vermes Slides of Catocala | Behavioral Ecology | Text | Proposal |  

GOALS & APPROACH: Our intention is to create a model resource of an alpha taxonomic group, the speciose genus Catocala, Underwing Moths. In it we intend to highlight the work of some 18th, 19th and early 20th century biologists who produced descriptions and illustrations of moths of the genus Catocala that depict, in some instances, for the first time, species for which we have modern taxonomic placements and photographic images. Some of the illustrations included come from valuable and fragile books held in private libraries or our University Special Collections. We hope to construct a complete database of the historic as well as recent illustrations and text on this speciose group and thus provide a model and useful example of the problems that are involved in the accurate identification, description and naming of the species in our natural world using modern methodology to access the information. Onto this array of species illustrations and descriptions we intend to overlay a fabric of taxonomy, phylogeny and behavioral ecology which may shed light onto how this rich assemblage of species evolved.

PROGRESS to DATE: We have assembled many of the building blocks of our proposed project. (1) Three historic assemblages of Catocala illustrations have been scanned as complete multi-image plates (in low resolution) as well as individual figures from plates (at higher resolution). (2) In addition, the text accompanying one of these assemblages (Strecker, 1887) has been scanned and transformed into text by OCR. (3) A modern set of kodachrome slides of Catocala, photographed by the late Harold Vermes, has also been scanned and transformed to a similar resolution and size as the figures which represent them. (4) Three classic and two recent lists of the known Catocala are presented as searchable lists with synonymies, polymorphisms and anomalies also listed.
In addition, some preliminary methods of accessing these building blocks have been constructed. (1) Provisional HTML pages have been constructed for the three historic assemblages of plates and figures. (2) Linked lists and keys of species names have been created as searchable indexes of the figures and related text (when available). (3) Icon oriented methods of browsing through the lists have been created. (4) Various HTML framed pages provide simultaneous viewing of any combination of 4-6 figures or slides allowing a user to do critical comparisons of illustrations or actual specimens. (5) Programmed examples of critical comparisons are provided to help the user learn how to gain insight into the database. (6) A behavioral ecology lesson is provided as a sample of a didactic use of the available illustrations. 

PROPOSAL for the NEAR FUTURE: (1) uniform and consistent interfaces to all the plates, figures, and slides will be constructed in HTML. The organization will use frames and provide various alternate tabular accesses to figures to be displayed in each frame. One ordering will be based on the most recent list of Hodges et al. (1983). This will allow the user to immediately recognize synonymies and polymorphisms which have been confusing in the past. (2) More programmed examples of significant steps in understanding the genus structure will be added. (3) The complete text associated with each classic assemblage of figures will be provided to allow students to follow the progress in understanding this group. (4) The figures will be made available for use in other research projects by publishing a CD package with the above figures and HTML script to access them included. (5) All the relevant figures and text of the oldest, and most difficult to access, source (Smith, 1797) will be acquired using a recently purchased focusable digital camera. (6) Institute a hyperlinked glossary of terms.

Programmed Examples:

Example 1: Catocala coccinata in four frames
- showing three specific figures and a link to slides of mounted material

Example 2: Catocala briseis in four frames
- showing two specific figures with links to three figs and mounted material

Example 3: Catocala aholibah in frames 
Example 4: Catocala agrippina in frames
- using a frame directed table to populate 4 frames with figures
Example 4a: Catocala agrippina in frames
- using a frame directed table to populate 6 frames with figures
- needs high resolution screen (1024x800 or greater)

Example 5: Catocala neogama in four frames
- 1 plate plus 2 figures and one slide in frames

Example 6: Catocala neogama in six frames
- 5 figures and one slide in frames
- needs high resolution screen (1024x800 or greater)

Example 7: A. Grote and J.B. Smith Lists in frames
- 2 check lists in parallel frames, convenient for comparison

Example 8: A. Grote, J.B. Smith and J. McDunnough Lists in frames
- 3 check lists in parallel frames, convenient for comparison

Example 9: Grote, Smith, McDunnough and Hodges Lists in frames
- 4 check lists in parallel frames, convenient for comparison

Example 10: Grote, Smith, McDunnough and Hodges Lists in frames
- 4 check lists with a preset search for a specific example illustrating the history of the viduata, vidua, desperata, maestosa controversy!

Behavioral Ecology Lessons:

Catocala relicta story

Searchable Text of Published Resources:
TD Sargents (1976) Legion of Night updated and hyperlinked 
Hermam Strecker (1872) Lepidoptera, Rhopaloceres and Heteroceras, Indigenous and Exotic hyperlinked 

Framed Figures and digital slides:


Any set of 4 moths in frames
- recommended for high resolution monitors only (800x600 and higher).

Any set of 6 moths in frames
- recommended for high resolution monitors only (1024x800 and higher).

Any set of 4 Vermes moth slides in frames

Hampson and Strecker in frames


Harold Vermes Kodachrome slides of Catocala

Whole Plates:

Barnes and McDunnough Moth Plates

Hampson's British Museum Moth Plates

Herman Strecker's Moth Plates

Concordance of Hampson and Strecker's Catocala Plates

Concordance of Barnes and McD., Hampson, and Strecker's Catocala Plates

The Widow Underwing Moth, Catocala vidua  
The Consort Underwing Moth, Catocala consors  

Other moths:

The Imperial Moth, Eacles imperialis  
The Virgin Tiger Moth, A. virgo

Strecker's Sphinx Moth Plates

Strecker's Giant Silk Moth Plates

Historic Keys:

Hampson's Key to the Catocalinae  

Hampson's Key to the Catabapta  

Hampson's Key to the Ephesia  

Recent to Historic Lists:

Franclemont & Todd's (1983) List of American Catocala North of Mexico  

J. McDunnough's (1938) List of Canadian and USA Catocala  

John B. Smith's (1891) List of N. America Catocala  

Aug. R. Grote's (1882) List of N. America Catocala  

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Page maintained by Joe Kunkel, Copyright(c) 1996. Created: 96/05/09 Updated: 97/07/05 for CD-ROM