Explanation of Names
TRAGOPOGINIS: from the larval host, Oyster Plant (Tragopogon porrifolius) and the two species of Goat's-beard with which Oyster Plant hybridizes (T. pratensis, T. dubius)
Adult: forewing highly reflective and uniformly dark grayish-brown with triangular pattern of three black spots near middle of wing
hindwing whitish at base, shading gradually to medium brown at outer margin
Larva: body slender, smooth, green, with prominent white dorsal and lateral lines
every Canadian province except Manitoba and Saskatchewan
US distribution unknown/unavailable, other than presence in Arkansas and Ohio, and BugGuide images in several eastern and western states.
introduced to North America from the Old World, where it is native to Europe and western Asia
adults fly from July to September
larvae feed on flowers, seeds, and leaves of Oyster Plant and Goat's-beard (Tragopogon spp.) plus columbine, dogbane, geranium, hawthorn, plantain, and a number of other low plants
Adult Mouse Moths prefer to run rather than fly when disturbed, which probably accounts for the common name, although being "mouse-colored" certainly helps to reinforce the name.
This species was presumably introduced from Europe, perhaps to both coasts of Canada some time ago, and has since spread inland to every province except MB and SK and to a number of estearn and western states.
live adult image
plus description and other info (Lynn Scott, Ontario)
live larvae and adult images
plus host plant list and other info (Jeremy Tatum, Butterflies and Moths of Southern Vancouver Island, BC)
live adult and larva images
plus biology and other info (R. Thompson and B. Nelson, Butterflies & Moths of Northern Ireland)
pinned adult image
plus other info (naturegrid.org.uk)
presence in Ohio
plus foodplants and flight season (Ohio State U.)
presence in Arkansas