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Species Feltia jaculifera - Dingy Cutworm Moth - Hodges#10670

Dingy Cutworm Moth - Feltia jaculifera Moth - Feltia jaculifera Noctuidae: Feltia jaculifera - Feltia jaculifera Noctuidae: Feltia jaculifera - Feltia jaculifera Moth St John WA - Feltia jaculifera Feltia jaculifera Noctuidae: Feltia jaculifera - Feltia jaculifera moth in thyme - Feltia jaculifera
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Noctuoidea (Owlet Moths and kin)
Family Noctuidae (Owlet Moths)
Subfamily Noctuinae (Cutworm or Dart Moths)
Tribe Noctuini
Subtribe Agrotina
Genus Feltia
Species jaculifera (Dingy Cutworm Moth - Hodges#10670)
Hodges Number
10670
Other Common Names
Dingy Cutworm (larva)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Feltia ducens - and three other old synonyms listed at All-Leps
Explanation of Names
The common name "Bent-line Dart" is erroneously applied to this species by some sources. It is actually the common name for Choephora fungorum.
Numbers
common to abundant
Size
wingspan 30-40 mm
Identification
Adult: forewing dark gray to blackish, patterned with white, gray, and tan streaks and lines; two white-lined veins (M3 and CU1) extend from bottom corner of reniform spot nearly to outer margin, forming a distinct W shape where they meet subterminal line; orbicular spot broadly triangular, adjoining whitish strip running parallel to costa from base to top edge of reniform spot; claviform spot dark gray, elongate, extending to level of reniform spot; reniform spot yellowish to light brown, with paler outline; dark gray patch along costa near apex, and another dark patch along outer margin near apex; hindwing dirty white with dark gray discal lunule, veins, and terminal band in male, or uniformly brownish-gray in female; fringe pale yellowish

Larva: body light grayish dorsally with smooth skin; four black equal-sized dots on dorsal surface of each abdominal segment; ventral surface pale yellowish
Range
coast to coast in North America (except Arizona, southern California, and Newfoundland), north to Northwest Territories, Yukon, and Alaska
Habitat
fields, gardens, open spaces, waste places; adults are nocturnal and come to light
Season
adults fly from July to November
larvae present in fall and spring (they overwinter)
Food
larvae are generalist feeders on more than 40 species of plants, including alfalfa, aster, blueberry, chickweed, clover, corn, dock, flax, goldenrod, garden vegetables, grasses, mullein, oats, plantain, raspberry, rye, tobacco, wheat
Life Cycle
one generation per year; eggs laid in fall; overwinters as a partly-grown larva
Remarks
The larva (cutworm) may be "dingy" but the adult is the brightest and boldest-patterned eastern species of Feltia. A more appropriate name for the adult might be Bright-striped Dart.
See Also
three other Feltia species are similar (herilis, subgothica, tricosa) but all lack the two whitish veins extending from lower corner of reniform spot, and forming a sharp W shape in subterminal line (compare images of 4 species at CBIF)
BugGuide pages of similar species: Master's Dart (F. herilis)
Subgothic Dart (F. subgothica)
Tricose Dart (F. tricosa)

Black Cutworms (larvae of Agrotis ipsilon) also have four black spots on dorsum of each abdominal segment, but the inner pair of dots are about half the size of the outer pair (compare images of both larval species at Iowa State)
Internet References
live adult images plus description, similar species, foodplants, flight season (Lynn Scott, Ontario)
live adult images by various photographers, (Moth Photographers Group)
pinned adult images plus description, similar species, distribution, foodplants, synonym (Gerald Fauske, Moths of North Dakota)
pinned adult image plus foodplants (Dale Clark, Texas)
live adult images and dates (Larry Line, Maryland)
live larva image (Marlin Rice, U. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
distribution and foodplants plus description and pinned adult images of male and female (Michael Pogue, The Noctuidae of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, mapress.com)
common name reference [Bent-line Dart] (pherobase.com)
presence in Florida; list (John Heppner, Florida State Collection of Arthropods)
presence in northern California; list [Humboldt County] - search on species "jaculifera" (Lepidopterists Society Season Summary, U. of Florida)
presence in northern California; PDF doc [Brooks Island, metro San Francisco] (Jerry Powell, U. of California at Berkeley)
presence in Oregon; list (Oregon State U.)
distribution in Canada list of provinces and territories (U. of Alberta, using CBIF data)