Subject: Undetermined moth from Chanchamayo, Peru.
Geographic location of the bug: Near Naranjal, Chanchamayo, Junin, Peru.
Time: 10:23 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: The body and wing shape are similar to a sphingid but the antennae are all wrong.
Locality was near Naranjal, Chanchamayo Province, Junin Region, Peru on January 10th, 2019 at about 1,020 m elevation. This was the morning the rainy season began for the locality. On the dorsal side of the abdomen there were broad, horizontal bands of black coloration, maybe four or five in number – a personal observation, not visible in the photo. It was of medium size for a moth yet small for a sphingid, probably with a wingspan close to or a little more than three inches.
The feathered antennae are what throw me as I am not familiar with any hawk moths with anything close to the resemblance. To me, it is visually similar to a Giant Leopard Moth (it isn’t one) but once again, the antennae are not like most tiger moths.
Any ideas or guesses, even just the family would be very welcome.
How you want your letter signed: Kevin
We agree this is not a Sphinx Moth. We believe it is a Flannel Moth in the family Megalopygidae, or possibly a Carpenter Moth or Goat Moth in the family Cossidae. We have contacted Lepidopterist Julian Donahue to get his input. Meanwhile, we will begin searching images of Megalopygidae from South America.
Julian Donahue provides a family identification.
Not a cossid. It’s Megaloypygidae.
Julian Donahue provides additional information.
It’s Podalia orsilocha (or orsilochus, depending on the source), in the Megalopygidae.
Attached is an image of both sexes from plate 162 of Vol. 6 of Seitz, Macrolepidoptera of the World.
Complete life history, with photos (presumably by Dan Janzen and Winnie Hallwachs) from the Guanacaste Province of Costa Rica is here:
Google the species and you’ll find numerous additional websites.
Yes, that is it!
As soon as I Googled the Latin name, there was a nice video link for YouTube with footage of the moth – exactly like the specimen I found.
You all are very good – please pass along my thanks to Julian Donahue as well.