Flightless Female Moth, but what species???

is this a moth?
Location: central Nebraska
April 11, 2011 11:19 pm
I found this in my house. He was hanging on to the wall like a cicada, but he can run pretty quickly. Those look like immature wings, but I thought moths came out fully formed. It is the first week of April and this is one of the first insects I’ve seen this year.
Signature: Jerry

Unknown Flightless Female Moth

Hi Jerry,
Congratulations on correctly classifying this as a Moth.  It is a flightless female Moth, though we need some time to attempt to identify the species.  There are many moth species that have flightless females.  Perhaps one of our readers can provide an identification while we are at work today.  As an aside, we get very few identification requests from Nebraska.  We wonder if it is perhaps the Winter Moth,
Operophtera brumata, a species accidentally introduced to North America from Europe.  Here is a photo of the Winter Moth on BugGuide.

Unknown Flightless Female Moth

I tend to agree that there is a good possibility that this is a female “Winter Moth” but the question still remains is it the exotic “Winter Moth” Operophtera brumataor one of the native Geometrid “Winter Moths”.  I know that here in the state of Michigan, we are on the look out for the exotic pest and maybe the good folks in Nebraska may be wondering of its establishment in their great state.  Us humans have the ability to help move these exotic species around and this problematic species is established in several states.  Puzzling though is that the adults are out and about from November to January but maybe this one was lucky to over winter indoors?
My Two Cents
United States Department of Agriculture

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