Currently viewing the category: "Moths"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

black and white moth with orange legs
Location: seen in Smithville TX but more in the Hill Country
April 11, 2012 8:34 am
I saw this moth in our garden once last year. Last week (April 3) we were in the western part of the Tx Hill Country and saw lots of them at Lost Maples State Natural Area.
Signature: friend of the bugs

Eight Spotted Forester

This distinctive diurnal moth is the Eight Spotted Forester.  We just realized we most likely need to go back through our archives and correct the spelling by deleting a second “r” in the name we have been using.  You may read more about the Eight Spotted Forester on the Butterflies and Moths of North America website.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Very beautiful bug
Location: Louisville, KY
April 4, 2012 9:43 am
I found this bug today at my work.
Signature: Curious

Luna Moth

Dear Curious,
This beautiful creature is a Luna Moth.  One of our yearly activities is to track Luna Moth sightings as they move from the southern portion of the range in Texas and Florida in the early months of the year to the northern portion of the range in Maine and Canada by May and June as spring warmth moves to northern latitudes.  Your Kentucky sighting is our most northern this year.

We have had VERY unusual warm weather EARLY. The whole month of February felt like April.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Male Polyphemus?
Location: Spring, TX
April 3, 2012 12:52 pm
We found this gorgeous fellow when I came home for lunch today (April 3rd). Looks like a male polyphemus moth? We got several hi-res pictures of him before helping him locate a good tree to bed down in. I’d like to send all the pics to you and let you post the ones you like. A couple of samples are attached here.
Signature: Brian Legg

Probably Western Polyphemus Moth

Hi Brian,
We agree, based on the well feathered antennae, that this Polyphemus Moth is a male.  Your attached photos show both the upper wings the undersides, and they should help our readers identify Polyphemus Moths in the future.  Now that spring has arrived and much of the country is experiencing warmer weather, we expect Giant Silkmoth sightings to rise rapidly.

Probably Western Polyphemus Moth

Hi again,
This guy was so happy to pose for our cameras, we wanted to send a couple more shots of him to give an idea of the size and to show a good shot of the underside of his wings. Thanks for the quick confirmation on my original submission and keep up the great work! We love the site!
Signature: Brian Legg

Update:  July 11, 2014
In researching a posting of a Polyphemus Moth from Colorado today, we realized that this individual is most likely the Western Polyphemus Moth,
Antheraea oculea, which was recently declared a distinct species and has much darker coloration around the ocelli.  According to BugGuide is found from  “Arizona to western Texas.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

March 31, 2012
Mt. Washington, Los Angeles, CA
We are currently experiencing technical difficulty with the GMail account we use to read your many wonderful submissions and we are unable to access any email at this time.  We hope you enjoy this photo of a White Lined Sphinx,
Hyles lineata.  It was attracted to the porch light outside of our offices.  Julian Donahue frequently calls us on our especial fondness for a seldom used alternate name, the Striped Morning Sphinx.  Charles Hogue who wrote Insects of the Los Angeles Basin uses the name Striped Morning Sphinx.  This moth is frequently seen in the morning where it rests after being attracted to lights.  We are not certain if Professor Amy Oliver will accept this as a portrait.

Striped Morning Sphinx

Update:  Monday morning, April 2, our email service was restored.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Hyalophora cecropia
Location: Mariposa, CA
March 30, 2012 7:04 pm
Hi bugman!
We found this beautiful silkmoth in our living room. I understand that this moth usually is found east of the Rockies. We are in Mariposa, CA. Thought you might enjoy this sighting.
Signature: Kristin

Ceanothus Silkmoth

Dear Kristin,
Your identification is not correct, but the error is understandable.  You have identified your moth’s genus correctly, but you were visited by the Ceanothus Silkmoth, a relative of the Cecropia Moth that ranges along the west coast.  The bushy antennae identify this as a male.  You can get additional information on the Ceanothus Silkmoth on BugGuide.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Central Texas moth!
Location: San Marcos, Texas
March 27, 2012 4:46 pm
Hey bugman! I found this moth today, March 27, outside of my apartment in San Marcos. It reminded me a convolvulus hawk moth that I found once in the Amarillo area, but when I looked at the photos of that one, the patterns on the wings were quite different. I did some searching and thought it looked a lot like an underwing moth, but when I picked it up, it stretched out its wings and there was no bright coloring anywhere. So, what do you think? Thanks a bunch!
Signature: Brittani Wray

Carolina Sphinx

Hi Brittani,
Your moth reminds you of the Convolvulus Hawkmoth because it is in the same family, Sphingidae, the Hawkmoths or Sphinx Moths.  Your moth is a Carolina Sphinx,
Manduca sexta, a common species found across much of North America.  You can read more about the Carolina Sphinx on BugGuide and on the Sphingidae of the Americas website.  The Caterpillars are known as Tobacco Hornworms and they feed on the leaves of tomatoes, tobacco and related plants in the nightshade family.

Correction:  July 10, 2012
We just noticed we incorrectly identified this Sphinx.  It is a Waved Sphinx, Ceratomia undulosa, not a Carolina Sphinx.  This can be verified by comparing this moth to photos on Sphingidae of the Americas.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination