seen at 11,000 ft. elevation
Dear bugman: Your web site is terrific. I’ve searched through countless photos of butterflies and moths and haven’t found one to match this one seen recently at about 11,000 ft. in the Colorado Rockies on a hike up Meadow Mountain. It was quite patient and seemingly calm, and allowed itself to be held for quite a while for photos. I’m assuming it’s a moth. Can you tell me what it is?

Hi George,
We would wager that this is a Great Tiger Moth, Arctia caja. According to BugGuide, there are four subspecies in North America. All of the images we can locate online show chocolate brown and white markings on the forewings, not charcoal and white like your image. Even the moth photographers site only shows two images. We will contact our neighbor Julian Donahue, an expert on Arctiids, and see what he has to say.

Confirmation: (07/26/2007)
Hi Daniel, You nailed that one. A beautiful specimen. The species ranges as far south as Utah (subspecies utahensis).

3 Responses to Great Tiger Moth

  1. Hohmann says:

    At my home, Frankfurt (Germany),
    the great tiger moth is common.
    But it is declining in the last years, because many individuans ended on the street lamps

  2. Andrew says:

    Tiger moth seen in Kent Bexley today

  3. Felicia says:

    I just found one with a torn wing in southern Utah

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