Dark Moth with Strong White Markings

2014 December 6

Another porch light moth from June 1, 2014. We had decided to turn on the light that particular evening because the previous day had been over 80 degrees F, which was hot enough that I expected that a lot of things had probably emerged from their pupae by then. This particular moth was a bit under an inch long.

A closer view of the dark area on the thorax shows quite a range of colors in a fairly intricate pattern.

After exhausting all of my search tricks and coming up with nothing, I had to post this one to BugGuide for an ID. And A. Hendrickson pointed me to what looks like a perfect match: the Pink-Barred Pseudeustrotia, Pseudeustrotia carneola. These are widespread, common moths that fly as adults from May to September, and their larvae eat goldenrods, docks, and smartweeds. And we do have a lot of goldenrod available. They are in the same subfamily as cutworms, and since most of them seem to overwinter underground as either partially-grown larvae or pupae, these probably do, too.

One Response
  1. December 9, 2014

    Just a working man’s moth. Common, but beautiful in its own way.

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