Small moths, length of forewing 6 to 13 mm; wings rounded, never produced or angulate; color bright green, with various reddish or purplish brown marginal patterns in some tropical species; antemedial and postmedial lines white or pale, normal, complete if present, but all lines sometimes obsolete; costa of forewing margined with white or reddish brown; discal spots present or absent; terminal line and fringes marked or unmarked; abdomen with a white dorsal stripe in the typical group, commonly with white, raised segmental spots in the tropical species.
The main venational character distinguishing Synchlora from Cheteoscelis and Merochlora is that Sc and Rof the hindwing are fused for a short distance only. Although there is some minor variation within Synchlora, as may be seen in the illustrations, the venation is otherwise essentially similar to that of the other genera.
Antenna of male broadly bipectinate for basal two thirds, tapering rather abruptly to outer third which is simple, length of longest pectinations 4 to 8 times width of shaft; female antenna simple, slender, ciliate beneath; palpi of male moderate, about as in Nemoria; palpi of female variable, like those of the male, or just slightly longer, to very long with a cylindrical third segment equal in length to the second; eyes of the sexes similar; front flat, about as wide across the top as high, the sides convergent ventrally in the usual way; tongue well developed; hind tibia of male moderately dilated, prismatic, with a long terminal process in all but herbaria and cupedinaria, always with both pairs of spurs; hind tibia of female undilated, also with both pairs of spurs.
Male genitalia with uncus reduced to a rounded basal sclerite, or obsolete; socii rigidly sclerotized, pointed, somewhat moveable, articulating with the vestigial uncus, if present, or fused to it and immoveable (as in noel); gnathos normally a toothed ring as in the Nemoriini but sometimes aberrant (divided into two arms in cupedinaria); transtilla well developed as a plate or band (also divided in cupedinaria); juxta a flat or concave plate, variable in shape, but without a papilliform process; saccus also variable––rounded, tapered, or with a distinct process that may be pointed (cupedinaria), rounded (irregularia), or truncate (noel); vestigial uncus, tegumen and vinculum generally forming a unit that is more ovate than spindleshaped; valve simple, rather slender, commonly without specialized structures but with a protruding triangular costa in hulstiana; coremata nearly always present; aedeagus of the two-pronged type characteristic of the tribe, the prongs usually smooth, but toothed in gerularia and cupedinaria; eighth sternite with a median notch or depression on its posterior margin.
Female genitalia of basically the same form as in Cheteoscelis and Merochlora, but with considerable variation. Bursa copulatrix with ductus bursae adjoining either terminally or subterminally, moderately elongate, membranous, with or without a signum; ductus bursae well differentiated from bursa, slightly to heavily sclerotized, and almost as variable in length and width as in the genus Nemoria; postostial plate triangular, finely scobinate, distinctive, evidently derived from the ventral membrane of the eighth segment and not homologous with the usual postostial plate. In the character of the postostial plate, cupedinaria is again aberrant. Apart from the more normal two-piece genital plate, irregularia and noel have a circular accessory postostial plate that may have had the same derivation as the triangular plate of cupedinaria. Synchlora aerata and its near relatives do not have a sclerotized genital plate.
- Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University
- bibliographic citation
- Ferguson, D. C. 1969. A Revision of the Moths of the Subfamily Geometrinae of America North of Mexico (Insecta, Lepidoptera). Peabody Museum of Natural History Yale University Bulletin 29:1-251.
- Katja Schulz (Katja)