Bug of the Month April 2016: Spring Fishfly in North Carolina

Subject: Unusual moth
Location: Central north carolina
March 30, 2016 9:19 pm
Hi! Last night this guy flew into my house to hang around on the wall near a lamp. I hadn’t seen this kind of bug before so I isolated it under a glass before letting it back outside. It would be nice to know what species it is and if it’s the male or female of said species. I’m only guessing moth by the antennae. Here is what I’ve observed: with wings closed its about 1.5-2 inches long, 6 legs, narrow when wings are closed wings start fairly far away from the eye region, Fuzzy moth like antennae, 2 sets of wings, body is very slender, smooth, and long when wings are open. Almost like how a dragon fly is situated. Either vey dark brown or black in color all over. Wings have a same color raised textured on them. Sorry the pictures aren’t the best. And I am unsure of the wing span.
Signature: Thanks! Lauren

Spring Fishfly
Spring Fishfly

Dear Lauren,
This is a male Spring Fishfly,
Chauliodes rastricornis, and here is what BugGuide has to say:  “Compare C. pectinicornis. Head and pronotum have dark markings on light brown background, as opposed to yellowish markings on dark brown background of C. pectinicornis. Antennae of female serrate, of male, pectinate. So, apparently, a Chauliodes with serrate antennae should be a female C. rastricornis. Note earlier flight (spring) of rastricornis in most of east. C. pectinicornis typically flies in summer.”

Male Spring Fishfly
Male Spring Fishfly

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