Centroclisis vitanda

View the above photo record (by Ryan Tippett) in LacewingMAP here.

Centroclisis vitanda 

Navás, 1912


Size: Medium sized (Wingspan around 90mm)

It is characterized by the long male ectoprocts. The adults are hairy and have pale grey and yellow-brown bodies.

Centroclisis vitanda – Near Carnarvon, Northern Cape
Photo by Ryan Tippett
Centroclisis vitanda – Near Carnarvon, Northern Cape
Photo by Ryan Tippett

Larvae: Nothing is known about the larvae of this species, although they are likely to closely resemble those of other Centroclisis spp.

Centroclisis sp. Larvae  – Ponta du ouro, Mozambique
Photo by Len de Beer


Centroclisis vitanda inhabits the Nama-Karoo. Most records come from the higher-lying central and upper karoo.

Habitat – Near Carnarvon, Northern Cape
Photo by Ryan Tippett


It normally rests well camouflaged on bark, and is readily attracted to light. Adults are on the wing during late Summer from December to March.

Centroclisis vitanda – Near Carnarvon, Northern Cape
Photo by Ryan Tippett

The large, dark larvae are voracious predators, which inhabit deep sand. They come to the surface at night to lie in wait for prey. They ambush their prey and do not construct pit-fall traps.

Status and Distribution

Centroclis is vitanda is a South African endemic, known mainly from the Eastern Cape, Northern Cape and Free State provinces. This species is seldom encountered and is generally scarce but may be fairly common in suitable habitat.

Distribution of Centroclisis vitanda. Taken from the LacewingMAP database, July 2022.


Order: Neuroptera Family: Myrmeleontidae  Genus: Centroclisis Species: vitanda

Further Resources

Virtual Museum (LacewingMAP > Search VM > By Scientific or Common Name)


The use of photographs by Alan Manson is acknowledged. This species text has benefited enormously from comments made by Mervyn Mansell on records he has identified in LacewingMAP. We acknowledge his important contribution.

Recommended citation format for this species text:

Tippett RM 2022. Centroclisis vitanda. Biodiversity and Development Institute, Cape Town.
Available online at http://thebdi.org/2022/09/20/centroclisis-vitanda/

Centroclisis vitanda – Near Britstown, Northern Cape
Photo by Alan Manson
Ryan Tippett
Ryan Tippett
Ryan is an enthusiastic contributor to Citizen Science and has added many important and interesting records of fauna and flora. He has been a member of the Virtual Museum since 2014 and has currently submitted over 12,000 records. He is on the expert identification panel for the OdonataMAP project. Ryan is a well-qualified and experienced Field Guide, and Guide Training Instructor. He has spent the last 18 years in the guiding and tourism industries. Ryan loves imparting his passion and knowledge onto others, and it is this that drew him into guide training in particular. Something that he finds incredibly rewarding is seeing how people he's had the privilege of teaching have developed and gone on to greater things. His interests are diverse and include Dragonflies, Birding, Arachnids, Amphibians, wild flowers and succulents, free diving and experiencing big game on foot. With this range of interests, there is always likely be something special just around the corner!