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

Subject: Satin Moth (Leucoma salicis)
Location: Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
October 8, 2013 6:56 am
Hi, y’all!
I sent this in originally during your long break, and think it may have gotten lost the pile you received during that time. Anyway, I found this moth in Yellowstone National Park in late July or early August. A number of moths of the same species were hanging out, motionless, perhaps after a night of debauchery, on the stone facade of the Mammoth Hot Springs ranger station. Some Googling has led me to believe that it’s a Satin Moth (Leucoma salicis). Information is sparse on these. Evidently their young nibble on aspens and the like (of which there are plenty in the area). According to Bugguide (http://bugguide.net/node/view/27833) they’re Europe-native and considered an invasive pest in the US. Anyway, I didn’t see any specimens in your archives, so I thought you might want to add it to your collection. 🙂
Signature: Helen

Satin Moth

Satin Moth

Hi Helen,
Thank you for taking the time to resend the underrepresented Satin Moth to us.  You are correct about the huge quantity of mail we couldn’t answer in August.  That was one of our busiest identification request times, but a family emergency necessitated leaving the office.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Sudden Strange Flying Moth Infestion
Location: NYC
October 7, 2013 8:14 pm
Hello Mr. Bugman! Over the last week or so, I have been noticing these bugs flying around my apartment. They are slow, but flurry their wings so are quite noticeable. It has gotten much worse over the last few days. Just now I killed about 15 of them. I live in small studio apartment in Manhattan. I even just noticed them in the cabinet above the sink. They are everywhere. I have had carpet beetle problems for years, but those flyers were very different (much smaller) than these. When I kill these, they have a black chalk to them with some red blood, but not much. Attaching photos for you! Please help!
Signature: Flying Fiasco in NYC

Indian Meal Moth

Indian Meal Moth

Dear Flying Fiasco in NYC,
You have Indian Meal Moths.  Go directly to the pantry.  Inspect the corn meal, oatmeal, flour, pancake mix and all other grain and vegetable drygoods.  Check out the stored nuts.  Look at the pet food.  Even tightly sealed containers don’t help if the infestation occurred at the factory or grocery store.

Hello Daniel!
Thank you so much for your reply. After a little investigation on Google, I did suspect this on my own last night. I had a big bag of Chinese herbs that were made up for me about 4 months ago, which have been left untouched. Those were definitely the culprit and disposed of every last food thing in my cabinets. Good thing I am single in the city and didn’t have much food.
My only concern is that it did get into the pet food that was NOT in the cabinet, and this may explain why my pooch has been having diarrhea!
One more thing, a worm or two were found while I was cleaning near the sink (probably from taking the bag down from up top). I managed to find and kill those, but do I need to worry those guys will lay eggs? Or that some of the stray moths will lay eggs in other parts of my apartment? I saw many that were flying into the hallway closet adjacent to the kitchen. Please advise.
THANK YOU AGAIN so much for being so amazing!!!
G.

Hi again G.,
We do not believe ingesting moth larvae will give your dog diarrhea.  The moths will only lay eggs where there is a food supply.  We suspect that many home Pantry Moth infestations begin by bringing home items that have already come into contact with the moths, though once established, the infestations can spread to other items.  Chances are quite good that much of the food that is consumed has eggs or larvae that go unnoticed, but when the items sit on the shelf forgotten for long periods of time, the infestations progress to the point where the adult moths are noticed.  We once opened a long forgotten container of oatmeal and discovered quite a surprise.

Hi Daniel,
Thank you for your thoughtful reply. Will these flyers get into my closets and lay eggs? Found two more this evening upon arriving home. Near the kitchen…
G

Hi again G.,
Indian Meal Moths have no interest in your closet or your woolen clothes.

Hooray for that. Now to finally track down the carpet beetles that have been taunting me for 10 yrs. good night and thanks again!!
g.

Update:  24 October 2013
Hi Daniel,
Hope this finds you well. It has been nearly 3 weeks since our first email exchange and although I have removed ALL of the food from my cupboards (which was not much since I am a bachelorette) I am still discovering flying objects mainly in the kitchen and on the walls of my apartment. Could it be leftover larvae that are hatching this late in the game? So frustrating. I’ve thrown away even tea, factory sealed. Do I need to toss my spices? I just don’t know where they could be living at this point…
Any knowledge would be excellent!
Flying Fiasco in NYC

Hi again G.,
They might have infested the spices.  Do you have pets?  You might want to also check that bargain bag of pet food.

I have a dog, yes, but he in no way eats bargain pet food 🙂 I have a small bag of ziplocked food, brand new bag, so it’s definitely not infested. I will throw away the spices. Thank you!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Sphinx Moth
Location: Pasco County, Florida
October 5, 2013 5:15 am
Found this moth in the laundry room. Around 3-4AM.
Signature: Jamie

Streaked Sphinx

Streaked Sphinx

Hi Jamie,
In February of this year, we featured a nearly identical photo of a Streaked Sphinx,
Protambulyx strigilis, as our Bug of the Month.  Your other Sphinx is a Tersa Sphinx.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Beautiful White Moth
Location: Coryell County, Texas
October 2, 2013 9:34 pm
Is this a Giant Leopard Moth?
I saw it quite by accident as the dogs and I were leaving our porch-sitting session tonight. It climbed from the lighted window up to the eaves, where it was stopped by the fascia board, and it walked back and forth, left, right, left, until I placed a stationary dead branch in front of it. Ugh, in the dark I didn’t notice that the branch was so sharp, but the moth was careful as it climbed aboard.
After a short photo session, I wedged the branch into a live tree, and the moth has since either climbed or flown away.
The leg joints, part of its face, and its antennae shone blue in the flash.
Here is a Bug Guide link, and I saw some lovely photos on your website. This one looks a little different from the moths I saw on the guides, so I’m not certain if it’s a Giant Leopard or not.
What a beauty!
Thank you for all of your help!

Signature: Ellen
Part 2: Here is the Bug Guide link to what might be a Giant Leopard Moth:
http://bugguide.net/node/view/493
I’ve included a few of the flash photos that show a hint of the Blue on Black (ref: awesome Kenny Wayne Shepherd song 😉
Thank you!
Signature: Ellen

Giant Leopard Moth (shot with flash)

Giant Leopard Moth (shot with flash)

Hi Ellen,
Your are correct that this is a Giant Leopard Moth.  We are using one of the flash photo to illustrate this posting.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth
Location: Great Lakes, IL
September 30, 2013 2:54 pm
This moth was on the steps outside of our building at the Great Lakes Naval Base about halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee. It was huge (almost the size of a small hand). Can you tell us what species it is?
Signature: John

Male Polyphemus Moth

Male Polyphemus Moth

Hi John,
You can tell this Polyphemus Moth is a male because of his well developed antennae.  We hope you had an opportunity to view him with his wings lying flat because then you would understand where he got his name.  There is a large eyespot in the center of each lower wing, and though the moth has two eyespots, one on each side, it was still named for the monocular cyclops from Greek mythology, Polyphemus.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth
Location: Staten Island N.Y.
September 30, 2013 1:27 pm
Do you know what kind of moth this is?
Signature: Brian

Brown Pandorus Sphinx

Brown Pandorus Sphinx

Hi Brian,
Typically, the Pandorus Sphinx is a lovely green moth that is often described as looking like camouflage.  We haven’t ever seen a brown individual, and we cannot say if your variation is rare.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination