Subject: Edwards Glassy-Winged Moth
Location: Petaluma, CA
October 16, 2012 3:01 am
Thanks Whatsthatbug! I love your website and have used it frequently to help me identify. I believe the first time I used it was after a recent move to California I needed to identify the ridiculous Potato Bug or Jeruselum Cricket! Tonight I had 6 large pink bodied moths outside and quickly found between your site and a couple others that my visitors were Edwards Glassy Winged Moths. It is October 15, 2012. I saw the first one about a week and half ago, then tonight there were six. www.insectidentification.org stated that ’They are most active in autumn and caterpillars feed on oak trees’, which is fitting since I live under a live oak corridor in Petaluma California. Unfortunately tonight, one also succumbed to my large resident Cross Orb-Weaver Spider, however, also unfortunately it was too high up to get a decent picture. I couldn’t figure out a way to post this additional information that I found so I decided to submit an ask form in hopes that you could post this info for others.
I also learned from http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/lepidopt/Noctuidae/Hemihyalea%20edwardsii.htm, which references Powell, J.A. & P.A. Opler. 2009. Moths of Western North America. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA. Page 273, plate 48.23. that,
Our largest tiger moth, each forewing with a span of 2.6-2.9 cm. It is known from western Oregon to southern California and the Channel Islands, east to Arizona, New Mexico, south into Mexico. The wings are lightly scaled with tan, especially the tips, making them translucent (thus the name glassywing). Older adults are often missing most of the scales and the wing tips become ragged. The head and thorax are clothed in fine tan hairs, the abdomen bright red-orange (easily seen through the translucent wings). They fly in a single brood from August to October, both sexes attracted to light (white, black [=UV], and mercury vapor). Eggs are laid on oaks, primarily coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia in our area). The caterpillars are brown-black with long hairs. Pupation takes place on or near the oak tree host, in a loose cocoon that includes hair from the caterpillar (as in many other tiger moths).
Thank you for supplying our readers with such a thoroughly researched posting of Edward’s Glassy-Wing. We suspect the recent rain and subsequent warming trend is responsible for the eclosion that you were lucky enough to witness. Our own local Southern California Tiger Moth, the Painted Tiger Moth, made its first appearance at our garage light last evening.
Signature: Annie Schultz