Subject: Floridian moths
Location: Southwest Florida
November 6, 2016 1:38 pm
Would you help me identify these two beauties?
The big yellow one, dying on its back, had similar coloring on the top side of its wings.
The reddish copper one, taking a nap on the wall, was much smaller.
Signature: Lost Yankee
Dear Lost Yankee,
Both of your moths are Giant Silkmoths in the family Saturniidae. The dead yellow moth is an Imperial Moth, Eacles imperialis, and in our opinion, they are much more beautiful alive than dead. Though you did not indicate from where you were transplanted, you might be interested in knowing that the Imperial Moth is found throughout eastern North America, as far west as Texas and north into Canada. Your other moth is an Oakworm Moth in the genus Anisota, and members of this genus share a similar range, but extending west to Arizona.
Neat! I wondered if the yellow one was
an Imperial. Certainly has a regally wide wingspan. Maine is where I
come from, and even though the Imperial ranges that far north, I’ve never seen it.
Too bad the Oakworm moth caterpillars feed on our beautiful live oak trees, but they grow up to be good-looking little fuzzies.
Thank you very much for your quick and informative reply, Bugman! As I explore Florida, you may hear from me again.