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

Subject: Bizarre moth mimicking crayfish
Location: Columbia, NJ
July 1, 2014 5:22 am
We saw this moth on our camper near the Delaware Water Gap, it looked odd, when it flew a short distance and landed it took on a completely different shape…a tiny crayfish! How does a moth evolve to mimick such a creature?
Signature: SeanK

Saddleback Caterpillar Moth looks like Crayfish

Saddleback Caterpillar Moth looks like Crayfish

Dear SeanK,
The illusion you describe is quite effective, and the outline of this moth does look like a Crayfish.  We wish your image had more detail.  Our best guess is possibly a Saddleback Caterpillar Moth,
Acharia stimulea, which is also pictured on BugGuide.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Who dat?
Location: Reston va
June 19, 2014 1:04 pm
My son found this odd critter on our screen. Location- Reston va
Signature: Buggin

Saddleback Caterpillar Moth

Saddleback Caterpillar Moth

Hi Buggin,
We spent many vacations in the late 1960s and early 1970s in Reston because our uncle was one of the first contractors to begin building in the model town, but we haven’t seen it since 1980, and we expect much has changed.  This is a Saddleback Caterpillar Moth as you can see from this matching image on BugGuide.  Though we have not shortage of stinging Saddleback Caterpillar images, this is the first we have posted of the adult moth.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mysterious moth that molted and got smaller?
Location: Pennsylvania
June 19, 2014 5:06 pm
Yesterday when I got to my office, there was a 1.5″ wide brown moth attached to the screen door. It was pretty cool looking, so I took a picture. It stayed there all day as people came and went, without so much as a flutter. The next day when I got to work and looked at the door, I saw the smaller yellow/orange moth attached in the exact same spot. It hung around for a bit, and then was gone; I’m guessing that it got bored and flew off. I’m wondering if they are the same bug that molted or somehow changed from the large brown into the smaller yellow? Or is it just a pure coincidence that they were both at the exact same spot? It’s got me pretty intrigued, and I keep looking around the internet and can’t seem to find any information. Thanks!
Signature: Jeremy S.

Spotted Apatelodes

Spotted Apatelodes

Dear Jeremy,
What an interesting question you have posed.  You are under a misconception that moths (and possibly butterflies) will molt.  Molting is a process undergone by the immature caterpillars, and the final molt occurs when the adult moth emerges or ecloses from the pupa.  The large moth you saw originally is a Spotted Apatelodes.  We are not certain of the identity of the smaller orange moth, but it may be in the family Geometridae.

Possibly Geometrid Moth

Inverted Y Slug Moth

Correction:  June 28, 2014
Thanks to a comment from Ben, we now believe this is an Inverted Y Slug Moth,
Apoda y-inversum, based on images posted to BugGuide.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Never seen this till NOW
Location: Conroe, Texas
May 9, 2014 11:10 pm
I woke up on morning at about 9-10AM the day looked foggy as if it had showered the night before. I let my dogs out my backdoor and I see this orange insect attached to the outer side of the glass of door. I looked closer at it and it looked furry/fuzzy had two white antennae flipped back towards it sides almost. I noticed it had 3 black legs on one side from the point of view I held. Which would mean it had 6 black legs in total. I looked towards its bottom and it looked like it had wings but not the butterfly kind but the beetle kind (short and tucked in) No Idea what it is but it has been bothering me. I posted it in social media and have yet to find an answer as to what the insect is.
Signature: Brandi Hernandez

Southern Flannel Moth

Southern Flannel Moth

Hi Brandi,
When social media fails you, turn to What’s That Bug?  This is a Southern Flannel Moth,
Megalopyge opercularis, and we verified our identification on BugGuide.  The stinging caterpillars of the Southern Flannel Moth which are called Asps, are more commonly encountered than the adult moths.

Wow! Y’all are quick! Thank You! Finally I can rest. Who knew touching them when they’re just caterpillars can be venomous though they look harmless because of their fuzzy appearance.
Thank You!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Fuzzy Flying Yellow Insect
Location: Anderson, SC
July 14, 2013 10:42 pm
Hello Bugman,
My brother took this photo in Anderson, SC. I am very curious to know what kind of bug it is.
Signature: Thank you, Rachel

Flannel Moth

Flannel Moth

Hi Rachel,
This is one of the Flannel Moths in the genus
Megalopyge, most likely the Southern Flannel Moth, Megalopyge opercularis, which you may find on BugGuide.  The stinging caterpillar is sometimes called an Asp

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Fuzzy looking bug
Location: central-south Mexico – Tabasco/Campeche
February 4, 2013 2:49 pm
Found this bug in December while road-triping through Mexico. Stopped at a gas station and there it was, lying on the side of the building.
Hope you can help.
Signature: Kelly

Flannel Moth

Hi Kelly,
Based on similar looking moths on BugGuide, we believe this is a Flannel Moth in the family Megalopygidae, but we have not had any luck matching an exact photo.  Perhaps it is in the genus
Megalopyge , and it looks somewhat similar to this image of Megalopyge bissesa from The Moth Photographers Group, but again, it does not appear to be an exact match.  The Hétérocères de Guyane Française Megalopygidae page has numerous mounted specimens, but none that we can say conclusively looks like your individual.  Perhaps one of our readers will be able to provide assistance.

Karl agrees with Flannel Moth ID.
Hi Daniel. Based on overall appearance, posture and visible wing venation I would have to agree that it is probably a Flannel Moth (Megalopygidae). I think it is probably in the genus Thoscora, a neotropical genus with seven or eight species. Unfortunately, online information is extremely sparse for all the species and I can’t come up with a conclusive identification. It looks very close to Thoscora acca, but I couldn’t find any information that this species occurs north of Costa Rica. However, this may just be due to a lack of information. The Area de Conservación Guanacaste (ACG) site shows an assortment of mounted T. acca, and the Hétérocères de Guyane Française Megalopygidae page that you linked to has several subspecies of T. acca (other sites regard these as distinct species) as well as two other species. Mounted specimens offer some clear advantages for identification as all features are revealed.  However, I find that other information such as natural posture is lost, which sometimes makes it difficult to recognize a species when it is compared to a photo of a live specimen.  My best guess would be that it is Thoscora acca. Regards.  Karl

We like your identification Karl.  Has anyone told you that you are awesome lately?

Wow! Thanks so much for replying so quickly! I thought the little guy must have been some sort of moth, but wasn’t exactly sure.  The camera-phone pic doesn’t do it justice, and I was eager to find its identity so I could properly depict it in some of my artwork.
Thanks again!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination