Moths of North Carolina
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Pococera unidentified species
MONA_number: 5620.01
Twenty-six species are currently listed for North America north of Mexico (Pohl et al., 2016). However, no modern assessment of the species has been done and the results of barcoding indicate a great deal of confusion between species and forms. Genetalic differences are also very slight (see Structural Photos below). Until a systematic revision is done for this genus -- clarifying the differences between the species and providing more guidance about how to identify them -- we lack standards about how to recognize even the traditionally named species and prefer to treat them only at the generic level................
Argyrotaenia mariana
Gray-banded Leafroller Moth
MONA_number: 3625.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Elaphria versicolor
Variegated Midget Moth
MONA_number: 9678.00
One of fourteen species in this genus that occur in North America north of Mexico (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010), nine of which have been recorded in North Carolina............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Baileya levitans
Pale Baileya
MONA_number: 8972.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Tebenna gnaphaliella
Everlasting Tebbena Moth
MONA_number: 2647.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
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Monopis pavlovski
Pavlovski's Monopis Moth
MONA_number: 418.10
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Anacampsis levipedella
MONA_number: 2241.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Chlorochlamys chloroleucaria
Blackberry Looper
MONA_number: 7071.00
One of four species in this genus recorded in North America and the only one found in North Carolina.A small gray-green or yellowish-green Emerald with white striae and fairly broad, cream-colored antemedian and postmedian lines. The postmedian on the forewing is fairly straight and even. The anteme...Like our flower-feeding species of Synchlora, most of our records for Chlorochlamys come from open, forb-rich habitats. These include old fields and disturbed areas but also natural habitats such as ...Polyphagous, feeding on the flowers and berries of many species of forbs and shrubs. Blackberries (Rubus spp.) are commonly used (Forbes, 1984), but Ferguson (1985) and Wagner (2005) list many species...Comes well to blacklights but we have no records from bait or flowers....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S5]This species is widespread, polyphagous on a extensive range of common plants, and occupies a broad set of habitats, including disturbed areas. Consequently, it appears to be secure within our state....
Eupithecia columbiata
MONA_number: 7459.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Cladara limitaria
Mottled Gray Carpet Moth
MONA_number: 7637.00
The genus currently includes four species found in North America, three of which occur in North Carolina.This species can be distinguished from C. angulineata with practice but the characters of the vertex and frons are reversed in Covell's Field Guide but correct in Forbes. C. limitaria is rather unifo...This species is found at higher altitudes in the mountains but usually associated with evergreens. It occurs with the other two species but usually at altitudes above 3000 feet....Polyphagous with records from fir, hemlock, larch, pines and spruce. However, because it is frequently confused with C. angulineata, host plant specificity is still unknown....The species comes readily to lights but not to baits....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S4]At most locations C. anguilineata is the most common species. However, at higher altitudes C. limitaria becomes increasingly common....
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Lomographa vestaliata
White Spring Moth
MONA_number: 6667.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Cladara atroliturata
Scribbler Moth
MONA_number: 7639.00
The genus currently includes four species found in North America, three of which occur in North Carolina.This beautiful species is on the wing in the early spring together with the two other members of the genus. Its green color and bold lines makes it unmistakeable but the color fades quickly in pinned...Our records all come from montane hardwood forests, including Cove Forests and Northern Hardwoods....Polyphagous using alder, birch, maple, oak and willow....The species comes readily to lights but not to baits....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S4]In general this is the least abundant of the three species although at higher altitudes it can be quite common....
Psaphida electilis
Chosen Sallow
MONA_number: 10012.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Catocala sappho
Sappho Underwing
MONA_number: 8786.00
One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. Included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group V (also adopted by Forbes, 1954). This groups comprises 10 species, all of which feed on Hickories or Walnuts (Juglandaciae). In addition to sappho, other members of this group that occur in North Carolina include habilis, serena, robinsonii, judith, flebilis, angusi, obscura, and residua.A large, pale gray Underwing with a strongly contrasting reddish brown reniform and dark blotches at the costal ends of the antemedian and postmedian lines. Hindwings are dark with a white fringe (For...Our records all come from stands of hardwoods, ranging from fairly mesic slopes and riparian habitats to dry ridgetops....Stenophagous, feeding on hickories. Wagner et al. (2011) specifically mention Pignut and other section Carya hickories but Forbes (1954) and Sargent (1976) state Pecan -- a section Apocarya species --...Comes to light to some extent but like other Underwings may come better to bait. Several of our records come from daytime observations when individuals were flushed from trunks; tapping is, thus, like...Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4 SUSargent (1976) described sappho as generally considered very rare, although locally common and regularly observed at some sites in Florida and the Gulf Coast. Wagner et al. (2011) likewise describe t...
Apogeshna stenialis
Checkered Apogeshna Moth
MONA_number: 5177.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
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Carmenta bassiformis
Ironweed Clearwing Moth
MONA_number: 2596.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Epimartyria auricrinella
Goldcap Moss-eater Moth
MONA_number: 1.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Lithophane laceyi
MONA_number: 9908.00
One of 51 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 25 of which have been recorded in North Carolina.A pale gray, moderately large Pinion. As detailed in Barnes and MacDunnough's original description of this spcies, a short, slender basal dash is present, above which a patch of whitish gray -- paler ...Our records come primarily from fairly dry sites dominated by xerophytic oaks, including Maritime Forest, Coastal Fringe Sandhills, and Pine/Scrub-Oak Sandhills. A site in Warren County where this spe...Apparently unknown...Apparently comes fairly well to blacklights, but like most Pinions probably comes better to bait....Listed as Significantly Rare by the Natural Heritage Program. That designation, however, does not confer any legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4 S1S3->[SU]Considered rare but poorly known over most of its range (NatureServe Explorer, 2016). We have very few records for this species, and too little information to determine whether it is a true habitat sp...
Lagoa pyxidifera
Yellow Flannel Moth
MONA_number: 4642.00
One of four members of this genus in N.A., two of which occur in North Carolina. Variably placed in the genera Megalopyge and Lagoa, it is currently assigned to the latter.Similar in size and shape to L. crispata but wings, body, legs, and antennae entirely pale to amber yellow with no markings. The broad forewings possess wavy hairs across the basal half that im...Except for the record from the Mountains, all of our records come from Longleaf Pine habitats. The majority are from dry sandhills, although there are also some from more mesic flatwoods and savannas,...Feeds upon Oaks as well as members of the Rose and Heath families (Heppner, 2003)....Readily attracted to lights...Listed as Significantly Rare by the Natural Heritage Program. That designation, however, does not confer any legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4G5 S2S3Although this species can be locally common, we have records from fewer than 20 sites in North Carolina. It appears to be a strong habitat specialist, occurring almost entirely in Longleaf Pine habita...
Zale galbanata
Maple Zale
MONA_number: 8692.00
One of 39 species in this genus that occur north of Mexico, 23 of which have been recorded in North CarolinaTypically gray to grayish-brown with a pattern of thin wavy lines; also shows some of the same variations found in minerea and other species, including forms having contrasting areas of dark and ligh...Most of our records (>85%)come from rich, alluvial floodplains where Boxelder is a prominent species. In the Coastal Plain, records come almost entirely from brownwater rivers, including the Roanoke ...Stenophagous, feeding only on maples. Wagner et al. (2011) specifically mention Boxelder (Acer negundo), but suggest that other maples may also be possibly used. If Red Maple (Acer rubrum) were comm...Appears to come moderately well to blacklights, with up to nine having been collected in a single trap. Also comes well to bait, including wine ropes....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public landsG5 [S4]Appears to be a habitat specialist, occurring primarily in rich alluvial forests. While probably widespread enough to be relatively secure across the state, it is likely to be affected by the creatio...
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Cleora sublunaria
Double-lined Gray Moth
MONA_number: 6594.00
This genus occurs over much of the world but in North America there are only two species and both occur in North Carolina.Moderately long-winged and similar in pattern and coloration to other Geometrids loosely termed the Grays. Usually easy to distinguish by its strong, black, and double-lined antemedian and by a white...We have records from a fairly wide range of Coastal Plain habitats. A number of records come from Maritime Forest and Maritime Scrub communities on the Barrier Islands, as well as from mainland areas...Recorded from cherry, oak and Myrica, and presumed to feed on many other woody plants (Wagner et al., 2001). In our experience, they are on almost any plant you beat in the spring, although at least ...Adults readily come to lights but not to baits. The caterpillars are among the most common species found on plants in late April and May. They may be found on almost all edible plants one searches!...Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.Caterpillars are abundant and adults are common in the lower eastern half of North Carolina. Doubtless they are common in the upper half as well but we have no records....
Himella fidelis
Intractable Quaker Moth
MONA_number: 10502.00
A single species genus restricted to eastern North America and found across North Carolina. A medium sized, brown, spring-flying moth, this species is readily identified by the series of black dots (usually 3) in the fold of the forewing. Once placed in Orthodes (Forbes, 1954), as were a hos...All of our records come from hardwood-dominated forests; no records come from Longleaf Pine, Peatland, or Maritime Forests, all of which have been extensively sampled in North Carolina. Both bottomlan...Polyphagous on a wide variety of woody plants, actual foodplant choices in North Carolina unknown. ...Adults come to light but the infrequency may be due to weak attraction. Wagner et al (2011) indicate adults do not come to bait but can be found at spring flowers....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.GNR [S4S5]Although we have relatively few records for this species, that is most likely due to its early spring flight. It feeds on a wide range of common host plants and has been found in a variety of forest h...
Schinia bina
Bina Flower Moth
MONA_number: 11105.00
One of 126 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2011), the majority of which occur in the West; 25 have been recorded in North Carolina.A medium-sized Flower Moth, shaded with olive on the thorax and terminal area of the forewing; often with rose or pink in the median area and darker purple in the basal area and on the head (not evide...Our sole recent record comes from a dredge-spoil disposal area located in the lower Cape Fear River estuary....Oligophagous, feeding on several species of Composites. Wagner et al. (2011) list the following species that occur in the North Carolina Coastal Plain: Smallflower Hawksbeard (Crepis pulchra), Blanket...We have too few records to determine how well adults come to blacklights. ...Listed as Significantly Rare by the Natural Heritage Program. That designation, however, does not confer any legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4 SHAlthough we have very few records for this species, neither host plants nor habitats appear to be limiting factors. Too little is known about this species in North Carolina to assess its conservation...
Pachysphinx modesta
Big Poplar Sphinx
MONA_number: 7828.00
This genus contains three similar species but members of the genus are quite unlike other Sphingids in our area. This large, greenish-brown moth with reddish pink hindwings is unique in the East. Sexes are similar....Unclear in North Carolina but Eastern Cottonwood -- the only species of Populus native to the area of the western Piedmont where this species has been recorded -- occurs primarily in riparian habitats...Stenophagous, possibly feeding solely on Cottonwoods and other Populus. Once thought to also use Willows but efforts to find larvae on those species have failed (Tuttle, 2007). ...Adults are attracted to light but not flowers nor bait. Like other large Sphingids, it may be undersampled by use of 15 watt UV blacklights but may come better to high intensity UV sources, such as m...Currently not listed by the Natural Heritage Program but we recommend that it be placed at least on the Watch LIst. Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S1S3]In North Carolina, this species is likely a habitat specialist on Cotonwood-containing floodplains but has not been recorded in some areas with extensive areas of this habitat, e.g., the floodplains o...
Chionodes mediofuscella
Black-smudged Chionodes Moth
MONA_number: 2093.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
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Achatia distincta
Distinct Quaker Moth
MONA_number: 10518.00
A monotypic genus found across most of eastern North America and throughout North Carolina. The genus is not closely related to other known genera but the species was included in Morrisonia by Forbes (1954).Slightly similar to Morrisonia latex but smaller and more distinctly marked. Look for the black bar running between the white antemedian and postmedian lines. Sexes are similar....All of our records come from forests dominated by hardwoods, including wet, mesic, and fairly dry sites. We have no records, however, from Longleaf Pine, Peatland, or Maritime habitats despite the in...Polyphagous, feeding on a very wide range of woody plants (see Wagner et al, 2011, for a partial list)...Adults are readily attracted to light but we have no records from bait....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S4S5]Although we only have a relatively small number of records for Achatia, this is probably due to its early spring flight. This species otherwise appears to secure in the state, since it is widespread a...
Proteoteras aesculana
Maple Twig Borer Moth
MONA_number: 3230.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Psaphida resumens
Figure-Eight Sallow
MONA_number: 10019.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Phytometra rhodarialis
Pink-Bordered Yellow Moth
MONA_number: 8481.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Scopula cacuminaria
Frosted Tan Wave Moth
MONA_number: 7157.00
One of 26 species in this genus that occur in North America north of Mexico (Pohl et al., 2016), seven of which have been recorded in North CarolinaA medium-sized Wave, distinguished from other members of this genus by its pointed hindwings, cream ground color, and heavy brown spotting in the subterminal area (Covell, 1970). Discal dots on both s...All of our records come from wet habitats, particularly shorelines of ponds and rivers. Although several records come from estuarine areas, the habitats at these sites are mainly freshwater. A few com...Forbes (1948) reared larvae on lettuce and cites Franclemont as saying they are general feeders. No observations from the wild are known, however, and the host plants still need to be confirmed; herba...Appears to come fairly well to 15 watt blacklights; we have no records from bait....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4 S2S3->[S3S4]Covell (1970) describes this species as local and rather scarce, which agrees with our findings. It is possibly a habitat specialist, but we need more information on its host plants to determine which...
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Synanthedon decipiens
Oakgall Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2571.00
...............
Podosesia syringae
Ash Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2589.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Vitacea scepsiformis
Lesser Grape Root Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2531.00
...............
Melittia cucurbitae
Squash Vine Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2536.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Carmenta texana
Texana Clearwing Moth
MONA_number: 2614.00
...............
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Synanthedon acerni
Maple Callus Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2554.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Synanthedon alleri
MONA_number: 2557.00
...............
Synanthedon exitiosa
Peachtree Borer Moth
MONA_number: 2583.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Synanthedon rubrofascia
Tupelo Clearwing Moth
MONA_number: 2567.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Caenurgina crassiuscula
Clover Looper
MONA_number: 8738.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
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Argyrotaenia pinatubana
Pine Tube Moth
MONA_number: 3602.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Catocala piatrix
Penitent Underwing
MONA_number: 8771.00
One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. Piatrix was included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group II (also adopted by Forbes, 1954), which contains just this one species.......Stenophagous, feeding mainly on Black Walnut, Pecan, Shagbark Hickory and other hickories (Wagner et al., 2011)......Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Cosmopterix clemensella
Clemens' Cosmopterix Moth
MONA_number: 1493.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Cameraria caryaefoliella
Pecan Leafminer Moth
MONA_number: 811.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Manduca sexta
Carolina Sphinx
MONA_number: 7775.00
A large Neotropical genus (63 species) of which 10 occur in the United States and 4 in North Carolina. This is our most well-known species.A large, grayish-brown sphinx moth. Manduca sexta is very similar and often confused with M. quinquemaculatus which is grayer but similar in size and feeds on many of the same plants. M. sexta is br...Occurs in open agricultural areas throughout the state. Larvae are a common pest of tomatoes in home gardens. The tobacco sphinx is associated with North Carolinaâ€â„Â...Feeds on most members of the Solanaceae but most often on tobacco and tomato. ...Adults are active from dusk onward at flowers and are attracted to strong lights, such as mercury-vapor lamps, but come only in small numbers to 15 watt UV lights. They do not come to baits....Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G5 [S5]Found primarily in agricultural areas and is not of conservation concern in North Carolina...
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Catocala miranda
Miranda Underwing
MONA_number: 8855.00
One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. Miranda was included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group XVII (also adopted by Forbes, 1954), which feed mainly on members of the Rosaceae; 12 other members of this group (as redefined by Kons and Borth, 2015b) also occur in North Carolina.A medium-sized Catocala with a pale gray forewing and black hindwings. It differs from C. orba primarily in size (Sargent, 1976); our specimens of orba exceed 50 mm in wingspan, whereas Sargent states...Habitats at the Graham and Haywood County sites probably consist of rich cove forest. While rich cove forest is present at the Rutherford County site, the collection site itself was located in a cedar...Stenophaous, feeding on a narrow range of hawthorns. Crataegus spathulata was specifically listed as a host plant for a population in Florida. In North Carolina, that species is sporadic in the southw...Schweitzer et al. (2011) suggest that this species may be particularly hard to observe, flying late at night, possibly coming poorly to lights, but also not coming to bait. While tapping has had some ...Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G3G4 SU->[S2S3]This species has long been regarded as very rare and local (Sargent, 1976), with very few records known from North Carolina. Schweitzer et al. (2011) speculate that it might simply be undercollected d...
Catocala orba
Orb Underwing
MONA_number: 8856.00
One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. Included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group XVII (also adopted by Forbes, 1954), which feed mainly on members of the Rosaceae; 12 other members of this group (as redefined by Kons and Borth, 2015b) also occur in North Carolina.A medium-sized Catocala with a pale gray forewing and black hindwings. It differs from C. miranda primarily in size (Sargent, 1976); our specimens of orba exceed 50 mm in wingspan, whereas Sargent sta...Most of our records are from the rich alluvial forests and swamps along the Roanoke, a brownwater river with its origin in the Ridge and Valley Province of Virginia. Parsely Hawthorn (Crataegus marsh...Stenophagous. Jeff Slotten (cited in Wagner et al.,2011) states that Parsley Hawthorn (Crategus marshallii) is used in Florida, along with possibly other lowland species of Hawthorn....Comes to blacklight and bait, but we have too few records to estimate how well they are attracted....Listed as Significantly Rare by the Natural Heritage Program. That designation does not confer any legal protection, however, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.G4 S2S3This species is considered uncommon but apparently widespread in southeastern swamps and alluvial forests (NatureServe Explorer, 2016). However, we have very few records for this species, currently re...
Xanthorhoe ferrugata
Red Twin-Spot Moth
MONA_number: 7388.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Selenia kentaria
Kent's Geometer Moth
MONA_number: 6818.00
............Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....
Agriphila ruricolellus
Lesser Vagabond Sod Webworm
MONA_number: 5399.00
.........Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands....