Subject: White Witch Moths from Ecuador
Location: Loja, Ecuador
April 29, 2013 5:38 pm
One day I visited the local Soccer stadium of Loja, Ecuador, and had the luck of finding these beautiful Moths lining the walls. I’m assuming that they were attracted to the stadium’s lights during the match the night before.
If my identification is correct, these are White Witch moths, Thysania agrippina. Thought I didn’t know this at the time, this species is known for having the largest wingspan of any moth or butterfly in the world. Hope you like the pictures!
Your guess on the species is close, but not exact. The lighter moth is an Owl Moth, Thysania zenobia. It is in the same genus as the White Witch, but it is a considerably smaller moth. You may read more about the Owl Moth on the Texas Entomology website or on BugGuide. The photo with numerous darker moths illustrates Black Witches, Ascalapha odorata. There is much lore associated with Black Witches. You can read more on BugGuide.