Subject: Which moth
Geographic location of the bug: Siskiyou Co, far northern California
Time: 04:20 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: I saw this beauty on my porch the other evening. As it was very docile, I was able to get a great picture. The next morning, I thought I identified it from a great insect book, the Ornate Tiger Moth. But I’ve done some research, and wonder if it could be a Mexican Tiger Moth, as it’s lacking the narrow vertical stripes on it’s wings. But the Mexican Tiger Moth doesn’t live here. I found a map of historical sitings, and the closest one was well over a 100 miles south. It seems they live mostly south of San Francisco, and in the southwest. (I live in Siskiyou County, about 40 miles from the Oregon border.) So can you help me know which moth it is? It was so striking. Maybe climate change is bringing them further north? Thanks so much for such a wonderful webpage, I’ve visited it many times.
How you want your letter signed: Salmon River Nature Lover
Dear Salmon River Nature Lover,
We agree that this is a Tiger Moth and we agree with your initial identification. We believe based on BugGuide images that this is Apantesis ornata, formerly Grammia ornata.
Thank you so much. And thanks for your fantastic site.