Cynthia Moth

Help with id of a moth.
I recently visited a butterfly park in London and took this picture of a moth but I cannot id it. Can you help? I though it might be a variety of silk moth. Thanks

Hi Ed,
If this is not a Cynthia Moth, Samia cynthia, it is a closely related species. Also known as the Ailanthus Silkmoth, the Cynthia Moth was introduced to North America from China in the 19th Century in a failed attempt at silk production. That introduction is also responsible for the introduction of that pestiferous tree, the Ailanthus Tree. The Ailanthus Tree, or Tree of Heaven, is the larval food plant and it has spread across the country, along roads and in cities, and has penetrated an estimated 30% of the Shenandoah Forest in Virginia. It is a noxious weed tree that displaces native vegetation, is invasive and very difficult to eradicate as it spreads by seeds as well as an extensive root system.

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