Brown moth with arched, scalloped wings and two distinct lines – Two-lined Hooktip

2014 December 17

Here’s another porch light moth from June 1, 2014 that Sam caught in an insect net for a closer look. The mesh openings are about a millimeter, so the moth is on the order of two centimeters long.

It held its wings as a high arch over its body, which is a bit of an unusual pose. And looking at it from the side, we see that the trailing edge of the wings is dark and scalloped, and there are two prominent dark lines running across the wings.

When I did an image search for “moth scalloped wing margins two lines”, initially I got a lot of hits for the Scalloped Hook-tip, a common species in the British Isles and Europe. While this probably wasn’t right, it did give me a genus name, which lead to its North American relative, the Two-Lined Hooktip, Drepana bilineata. Which looks like an excellent match. Their caterpillars evidently eat the alder, birch, and poplar that we have growing all around our property. They pupate inside of folded leaves, and have two generations per year, so we should see them around both in the spring, and in late summer/fall.

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