Currently viewing the category: "Owlet Moths"
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Subject: help identifying moth
Location: Trinidad and Tobago (Caribbean)
August 16, 2015 12:55 pm
Hi bug man, I’d like some help identifying a moth that i’ve never seen before. I took this photo lastnight in Trinidad and tobago.
Signature: Prince Siu

Possibly Geometer Moth

Possibly Geometer Moth

Dear Prince Siu,
At first we thought this was a Geometer Moth in the family Geometridae, but the more we looked at it, the more we thought it might be in the family Erebidae because of its resemblance to a White Witch, the largest South American moth.  We are still leaning towards a Geometer Moth, but we have not been able to locate any matching images online.  We will continue to research this and we will also enlist the assistance of our readership.

Update:  August 17, 2015
Thanks to a comment from Cesar Crash indicating this looks like a member of the genus
Letis, we searched and found a similar looking moth from Ecuador on FlickR, which is good enough for us to eliminate the family Geometridae.

Ann Levitsky, Prince Siu, Megan Zuelsdorff, Heather Duggan-Christensen, Jacob Helton liked this post
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Subject: New to us critter
Location: Reston, Virginia
May 17, 2015 7:42 pm
While visiting family in Reston, Virginia, on Mothers Day 2015, we spotted this on the patio door. None of us had seen anything like it before, but knew we could count on WTB to enlighten us. Many thanks in advance.
Signature: Curious

Eight Spotted Forrester

Eight Spotted Forrester

Dear Curious,
This through the glass view provides a very interesting perspective on the Eight Spotted Forrester,
Alypia octomaculata, a diurnal Owlet Moth.  MOBugs has a very nice narrative on the Eight Spotted Forrester.

Stacey Haza, Maryann Struman, Jaye Ridet, Andrea Leonard Drummond, Alisha Bragg, Mary Lemmink Lawrence, Kitty Heidih liked this post
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Subject: ID of Butterfly
Location: Southwest Virginia near New River
April 11, 2015 8:21 pm
This little butterfly landed near me on the trail along New River in Southwest Virginia. I haven’t been able to ID it, though I have searched online. Please help!
Signature: Carolyn

Grapevine Epimenis

Grapevine Epimenis

Dear Carolyn,
The reason you are having a difficult time with this identification is that this is a diurnal Owlet Moth, the Grapevine Epimenis,
Psychomorpha epimenis.

No wonder!  Thank you so much!  It’s such a pretty little moth–new to me!  You guys are great!!!

Carol Love, Kathy Haines liked this post
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Subject: Moth
Location: Bakersfield, Ca.
April 8, 2015 11:41 am
Hi, I live in Bakersfield, California. The Verbena is crazy this year (April 2015) and this moth along with a tons of Painted Lady Butterflies are having a ball. I had no idea how many species of moths there are so I am lost trying to ID this one. Can you????
Signature: Thanks, Mary Rosica.

Possibly Owlet Moth

Alfalfa Looper

Dear Mary,
We believe this is a Noctuoid Moth, probably an Owlet Moth in the family Noctuidae, but we haven’t a clue as to anything more specific.  Perhaps one of our readers will be able to provide further information.  We are curious if this moth is strictly diurnal.  See BugGuide if you want to browse through images of Owlet Moths.

Daniel, thanks for a direction to go! I will look for sure. They are very active and almost never stop beating their wings. Was hard to get a still shot with the wings open. Never seen so many and during the day as well. Obviously, my cat Ebby finds all the activity very fascinating.
Again, thank you!

Update:  April 10, 2015
We just approved a comment from Ben indicating that this looks like an Alfalfa Looper, Autographa californica, and according to BugGuide:  “adults are active day and night, and are attracted to light.”

Yes!!!! That’s it. Also looked for other pictures on the net under images and found him big as day. You folks are great!! Thank you so much.

Amy Gosch liked this post
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Subject: black moth with orange and white markings
Location: Missouri, United States
April 4, 2015 3:59 pm
while moving tent caterpillars off of our plum tree, this little pollinator stopped by! I’m glad I got some good pictures. I’m about 85% sure this is a moth but I’d just like to hear your opinion as well and if you can give me the species that’d be much appreciated!
it had fuzzy legs and body, like a moth. with a proboscis like abutterfly.
Signature: Stolz

Grapevine Epimenis

Grapevine Epimenis

Dear Stolz,
We quickly identified your moth on BugGuide as a Grapevine Epimenis,
Psychomorpha epimenis, and according to BugGuide:  “Adult records are mostly from February to July.  Food Larvae feed on the leaves of grape, Vitis (Vitaceae) Common nectar genera: Forestiera, Prunus, Crataegus, Cercis spp.”  Since Plum is in the genus Prunus and it is April, this sighting is very typical.

Grapevine Epimenis

Grapevine Epimenis

Juliett Moth, Amy Gosch, Mary Lemmink Lawrence liked this post
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Subject: which owlet moth species pollinate witch hazel?
March 18, 2015 8:30 am
Hello WTB
In doing some research on witch hazel,  I found that the pollinators are  specie(s) of owlet moths. Dr Bernd Heinrich found that these moths were the pollinators and had the ability  to thermo-regulate by shivering, enabling them to be active during the cold season when our native witch hazels bloom. I also read that these moths have a dense body pile, which insulates them. What a great story this is! I wanted to include a picture of one of these moths in my article about witch hazel. Could you tell me which specie(s) of moth these might be? I am assuming Dr Heinrich did the research in Maine or somewhere in New England where he is based. Also, would someone be willing to let me publish a/their picture of the moth in question for my article? (I would of course attribute the photographer and use a copyright symbol with it.) I write a monthly column on native plants for wildlife for my birding club, The Capital Area Audubon Society in Lansing, MI.
Thanks for any help, and for considering my photo request.
Ann Hancock
Co Editor, The Call Note
Lansing, Michigan
Signature: Ann Hancock

Dear Ann,
We are not certain which species of Owlet Moth pollinates Witch Hazel, but we will post your request and try to do some research.  We have found a reference to Winter Moth on the Venerable Trees site.

Thank you so much. The whole Owlet Moth, and flying in the cold season is a gee-whiz story to me.
I appreciate your help and hope that someone will know the answer.
If we get a reply and/or a picture I will post an update in next month’s column.

Lori Ledeboer liked this post
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