Currently viewing the category: "Geometrid Moths"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Moth?
Geographic location of the bug:  Nottingham
Date: 07/22/2018
Time: 04:54 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Please can you tell me what this is?
How you want your letter signed:  Elaine

The Magpie newly eclosed

Dear Elaine,
The nonspecific response is that this is a Tiger Moth in the subfamily Arctiinae, and it is freshly eclosed which means it has recently emerged from its pupal stage and its wings have not yet fully expanded and hardened, which is making our ability to identify it more difficult.  It most closely resembles a Garden Tiger Moth,
Arctia caja, as pictured on UK Moths where it states:  “Another species which was a favourite with early collectors, who selectively bred it to create unusual colours and forms.  Once a quite common moth in most of Britain, it seems to have declined in many places in the last few years.  It flies in July and August, and will regularly visit the light-trap.”  We would even entertain the possibility that a modern breeder might be releasing some “unusual colours and forms” back into the wild in an effort to help remedy that they “have declined in many places in the last few years” but the markings on the thoracic region as well as the scalloped wing edge eliminate the Garden Tiger Moth as the proper identification.  The only other Tiger Moth profiled on UK Moths that it resembles is the Cream-Spot Tiger Moth, Arctia villica, but in that species, the spots are white on a dark ground while your moth has dark spots on a white ground.  We are going to contact Arctiid expert Julian Donahue to get his opinion.

Dear Daniel
Thank you for looking into the moth that I saw it will be interesting to hear what your expert has to say. The moth wasn’t really moving and I got very close to it and moved it on it’s stick to photograph, I expected it to fly away but it stayed in the same place.
Thanks.
Elaine
Correction Courtesy of Julian Donahue:
Easy to be fooled by a colourful (since it’s British) un-expanded moth, isn’t it?

This is The Magpie, Abraxas grossulariata (Geometridae).
More images here:
All the best,

Julian

We had a bout of deja vú because according to UK Moths:  “A very distinctive species, this was a favourite with early collectors, who used to breed it to obtain unusual coloured and patterned forms.  Quite common in most of Britain, though less so in Scotland. … The moths fly in July and August and are regularly attracted to light.”
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  diurnal moth from Sulawesi, Indonesia
Geographic location of the bug:  Lore Lindu NP, north-central Sulawesi
Date: 05/13/2018
Time: 04:28 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear bugman –
Could you please help ID this day moth from central Sulawesi, feeding rather unglamorously on some roadkill? It was seen on the 19th of September 2017 on a road through pristine humid forest at an elevation of about 1500m. I think perhaps it could be form the genus Milionia, but I am not a moth expert (at all!). Many thanks!
How you want your letter signed:  Isidoreajar

Geometer Moth from genus Milionia

Dear Isidoreajar,
Based on what we have found on the internet, we believe your genus identification
Milionia is correct, but we cannot find any individuals with these exact marking.  Perhaps it is sexual dimorphism and/or regional color variations.  This image from Etsy and this posting to Wikipedia are similar but not exactly correct. 

Dear Daniel –
Thank you for your prompt reply: I was prepared to be astounded if you had come back with a positive ID as I have had a pretty thorough search (with my limited expertise though!) through the obvious online avenues. Having said that, M. delicatula is very close, just lacking the small red forewing markings. I’ll keep trying!
Many thanks again: your efforts are really much appreciated.
All v best wishes,
Jonathan Meyer

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: I this a female Imperial Moth?
Location: Sheboygan, WI
July 4, 2017 8:30 am
I found this moth attached to the siding on our porch in Sheboygan, WI. I have never seen anything like it before. It was about 1 1/2 inches from wing tip to wing tip. The stripe is definitely black, not brown. All of the information I found about Imperial Moths suggest that they are yellow with brown. What is this? Thanks!
Signature: Mary

Yellow Slant Line

Dear Mary,
This very lovely Geometer Moth is not a female Imperial Moth, though both are yellow.  We will be searching BugGuide for its identity, but in the meantime, we are posting it as unidentified.

Hello again Mary,
We identified your Geometer Moth as a Yellow Slant Line, Tetracis crocallata, thanks to images on Moth Photographers Group, and we verified its identity on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae feed on leaves of alder, chestnut, sumac, willow” and “Larva – a twig mimic; young instars have brown head and green body with white intersegmental membranes; older instars have two morphs: (A) reddish-brown with 2 pairs dorsal and 2-3 pairs lateral white tubercles; T1 with forward projections tipped white (B) light brown to gray with no white tubercles; T1 projections present, but not white; morph B is similar to A. pampinaria but has no dorsal tubercles on A7 [adapted from description by Pedro Barbosa].”

Wow! Thanks, Daniel! I wonder how this poor thing ended up in Wisconsin.
I really appreciate your assistance.
Just an FYI, I left it alone. I am not in the habit of killing creatures of any sort.
Mary

Dear Mary,
Based on BugGuide data, Wisconsin has reported sightings of the Yellow Slant Line during the months May through August.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth id
Location: Southern Portugal
December 9, 2016 2:41 pm
Could you id this moth for me please. I’ve had no success elsewhere.
The photo was taken in southern Portugal in May.
Signature: David B

Diurnal Moth

Diurnal Moth

Dear David,
Perhaps our readership will have better luck identifying this lovely, orange, diurnal moth since our initial search has not produced an answer for you.  We searched both Encyclopedia of Life Moths of Portugal and The Lepidoptera of Portugal.  We suspect this moth is either in one of the following families:  Geometridae, Pyralidae, or Crambidae.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Large moth
Location: Winnipeg
August 6, 2016 8:53 pm
Hi. I saw this moth on the side of a shed in my backyard. It is large – 3-4 inches across. Can you identify it for me? Thanks for your help.
Signature: Todd

Common Lytrosis

Common Lytrosis

Dear Todd,
After a bit of searching, we identified your Geometrid moth as a Common Lytrosis,
Lytrosis unitaria, thanks to this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide:  “Forewing length 21 to 30 mm., females larger than males.”  Though BugGuide does not list any Manitoba sightings, The Moth Photographers group does list a sighting that appears to be Winnipeg.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Striped Moth, Monteverde, Costa Rica
Location: Monteverde, Costa Rica
August 7, 2016 2:17 am
Hi,
I’ve recently tried to identify some of the insects I photographed in Costa Rica, in the summers of 2009 and 2011. I have had some success (this site has been of great help), but this fellow has been eluding me so far, so I figured I’d ask the experts.
This was taken in Monteverde, Costa Rica, on June 27, 2011.
Thanks in advance
Signature: Thibaud Aronson

Geometer Moth: Pityeja histrionaria

Geometer Moth: Pityeja histrionaria

Dear Thibaud,
Considering the beauty of this striking moth, this was one of the more difficult searches we have undergone in recent memory, but before we provide you with the information we have gleaned from the internet, we first need to rant on Pinterest.  In our minds, the Pinterest site is the scavenger of the internet.  Pinterest pilfers images from other sites, and because it has so many users, search engines bring up images on Pinterest even before they bring up those same images on the originating sites.  Then one must register to even access the original site.  We are deeply offended by Pinterest.  Our word searching led us nowhere, so we decided to do an image search, which we rarely do, and the only two internet images we could locate of your moth were on Pinterest, but we could not trace the originating sites since we flat out refuse to register on Pinterest.  Now that we have that off our collective chest, we can tell you what we learned.
Our first lead was a FlickR posting by Andreas Kay of an image taken in Ecuador, and we learned the identity of
Pityeja histrionaria in the family Geometridae.  On FocusOnNature we learned:  “Pityeja histrionaria ranges extensively in much of South America. It occurs from Mexico to southern Brazil.”  Though we did not learn much more about the moth, we located another image from Ecuador on FlickR, an image from Peru on Project Noah and an image on the National Moth Week site with no location.  Several sites have images of mounted specimens, including Lepidoptera Barcode of Life and Encyclopedia of Life.  This looks to us like it would be a diurnal or day flying species.  Are you able to provide any insight?  Did you find this lovely Geometer Moth in the morning after it had been attracted to a light lit at night?

That’s the one! Thanks for the amazingly fast reply!
I apologize, I should have specified, I did see this one at night, attracted to the lights of the field station.
As for Pinterest, I fully share your sentiment, and all I can say is that I neither have an account nor use it myself.
Cheers
Thibaud

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination