This moth may pass for a fallen dead leaf or a detached bark flake. The white 'mould' patch is angular suggesting a leaf vein junction. This species ranges from Peninsular Malaysia to Java and Borneo
The caterpillars of this genus of Prominent moths have the longest known legs in the Lepidoptera. They are 'flared and vibrated' if the caterpillar is disturbed. They are clearly fallen dead leaf camouflage artistes. There are two origin explantions for the camouflage; it has fallen from the canopy above and 'snagged' on the shrub below; or the leaf has died on the shrub and it has yet to detach. The caterpillars of Neostauropus alternus are highly polyphagous (not fussy about what they eat) and have been recorded as feeding on a total of 36 genera of host plants belonging to 18 families. Orchardists do not like this moth when it feeds on certain crops like tea, coffee, mango and rambutan. The species extends from the Himalayas, Bangladesh, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, Sumatra, Peninsular Malaysia, Java to Borneo and Sulawesi and then east to the Moluccas
It is interesting to note that the forward splaying of the hindwings to give the impression of four overlapped leaves camouflage technique is applied by Neostauropus major. This approach has been evolved at least twice as seen in the sympatric Family Lasiocampidae with the genus Trabala being a notable practitioner. However this species has opted for the 'dead leaf' mode rather than the yellowing or green leaf mode of Trabala species. The caterpillar of Neostauropus alternus is highly polyphagous (not fussy with its food selection) and has been recorded to feed on a total of 36 genera of host plants belonging to 18 families. This is a widespread species extending from India, Myanmar, Thailand, China, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Philippines south to Borneo, Sumatra, Java, Bali and the Lesser Sunda Islands.
This unidentified Syntypistis sp. came from my favourite place in South East Asia Mt. Kinabalu National Park Sabah Malaysia. It ticks all the boxes for the naturalist. There are two places to stay within the park boundaries; park HQ and Mesilau which is a little higher on the mountain side (2,000m). I witnessed an irony during my visit to Mesilau. There is a conference facility in the accommodation hub. It is well lit at night and the lights attract many beautiful insects, especially moths, from the surrounding montane forests. I was checking the lights in the morning when a bus arrived at the entry carrying local priests representing the Christian faith. There were stunning moths scattered over the parking zone and steps into the building. I witnessed the mob of distracted religious patriarchs nonchalantly crush and crunch their way across the tarmac and up the stairs through this beautiful living carpet, not one conscious of the devastation they caused. The pattern on top of this moth's thorax reminds me of a monkey head