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Compendium Spot ID Tutorials Labs Glossary NC Pests

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Spot ID Characters for the Family

Arctiidae

Tiger Moths

To view close-ups, mouse over each moth in the left image.


Key Characters:

  • Antennae filiform
  • Wings often colorfully marked with dark spots or geometric shapes
  • Some species are mostly white with a few dark spots
  • Subcosta (Sc) arises near middle of discal cell in hind wing
  • Four medio-cubital veins reach distal margin of hind wing

Picture Gallery

The tiger moths are known for their filiform antennae and colored wings with geometric designs or dark spots.  The hind wings are distinguished by a subcosta that begins at the middle of the discal cell and four medio-cubital veins that extend to the distal end of the hind wing.  When the wings are at rest, they are held over the body.  The larvae are often referred to as ‘woolly bear caterpillars’; the pupa cocoons are largely comprised of the hair from the larvae.  Many species in this family are nocturnal and have a tympanal auditory organ that is located at the base of the abdomen.  This organ helps them avoid bats.