I’ve always been a sucker for taking photos of the ‘scribbles’ on gum trees so its been interesting to hear that only recently that a group of retired CSIRO scientists has finallly worked out the life cycle of the little moths whose caterpillars make their marks on our local gum trees.


The first scribbly gum moth was described and  named by a English school teacher Edward Meyrick in 1935. The moth’s name Ogmograptis scribula, combines ogmos, Greek for furrow; graptis, Greek for inscribed/painted; and scribula, Latin for writing.

Meanjin has a feature story on the discovery; while CSIRO’s story  here provides a useful diagram for deciphering your local scribble.