Currently viewing the category: "Black Witch"
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Subject: Please Identify
Location: San Antonio, TX 78229
September 15, 2014 2:05 pm
I suspect this is a moth? I found it on my car when I left work on Sunday September 14th around 11:30pm. I live in San Antonio, Texas and I saw it in the 78229 zip code. Let me know if you need more information.
Thank you
Signature: Ray Silva

Black Witch

Black Witch

Hi Ray,
This spectacular moth is a Black Witch,
Ascalapha odorata, a species that has naturalized in the southernmost parts of the U.S., but most individuals migrate north from Mexico during the fall months.  See BugGuide for additional information.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth
Location: San Fernando, CA
August 22, 2014 5:31 pm
Friend found this in his home in San Fernando, CA. It’s huge
Signature: J Lytle

Black Witch

Black Witch

Dear J Lytle,
This impressive moth is a Black Witch, and they are found in the American neotropics.  They are a common species in Mexico and each year at the end of summer, individuals fly north, some reaching as far north as Alaska.  Though they are unable to naturalize in the northern climes, larvae have been found in Southern California, though most sightings in the continental US are of migrants.  This individual is a male Black Witch.

Thanks so much for the information. I have a copy of Hogue’s Insects of the LA Basin, and the Black Witch photo didn’t look like this, but all your sources do!
Best,
Jeanie Lytle

The illustration in Hogue is a female Black Witch.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: large brown moth
Location: Texas Gulf Coast
October 19, 2013 9:10 am
This moth appeared on the wall of my sun porch 2 days ago and hasn’t moved. I live in Southeast Texas on the gulf Coast. Can you please tell me what it is? Also, what does it eat and is it drawn to light like other moths?
Thank you for your help!
Signature: Brenda from Texas

Black Witch

Black Witch

Hi Brenda,
Despite being a male, this Black Witch would not be called a warlock, and it is just a bit too early for Halloween.  Black Witch moths often fly up from Mexico at the start of the rainy season there, and that roughly coincides with our autumn months.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of moth is this
Location: Virginia Beach , Va
June 14, 2013 7:07 am
What a gorgeous moth with a 5 in wing span. Literally as big as my hand . Please let me know what kind it is. Been in Virginia Beach for over 20 years and I’ve never seem one like this. Thanks!
Signature: Jennifer T

Black Witch

Black Witch

Dear Jennifer,
This is a male Black Witch, a species that has annual migrations north from Mexico each year with some individuals reaching Canada.  These migrations have been documented since the nineteenth century, but it is unclear why the migrations occur since the species cannot survive or reproduce north of the border states.  The Black Witch Moth: Its Natural and Cultural History should answer any additional questions you might have.

Thank You for the quick response!   I looked thru so many photos and they all started to look the same. What a fantastic website!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Hawaiian Moth
Location: Hawaii
May 31, 2013 7:02 pm
Hello, Mr. Bugman.
My friend saw this moth on the wall on her home in Hawaii. She asked me what it was. I’m from Arizona, so it’s nothing I’ve ever seen before. She said it must have been 5-6 inches across.
Thank you very much!
Signature: Lucille

Black Witch and Lizard

Black Witch and Lizard

Dear Lucille,
Tell your friend this is a Black Witch, and a good source for information is the Texas Entomology page called The Black Witch Moth:  Its Natural & Cultural History
Your submission will go live in early June during our holiday away from the office.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Black Witch Moth
Location: Honolulu Hi
May 6, 2013 3:07 pm
Hey bugman, just reporting sightings of Black Witch Moth here in Hawai’i.
Is this a male or female?
Signature: Hawai’i Kane

Black Witch

Black Witch

Dear Hawai’i Kane,
This Black Witch is a male of the species, and to the best of our knowledge, they are not called Black Warlocks.  Female Black Witches have bands on the wings.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination