Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes


TaxonomyBrowse
Info
ImagesLinksBooksData

Species Amphipyra tragopoginis - Mouse Moth - Hodges#9639

Caterpillar - Amphipyra tragopoginis Amphipyra tragopoginis Moth - Amphipyra tragopoginis Amphipyra tragopoginis Silvery Moth - Amphipyra tragopoginis Mouse moth - Amphipyra tragopoginis Mouse Moth - amphipyra tragopoginis? - Amphipyra tragopoginis Mouse Moth - Amphipyra tragopoginis
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
No Taxon (Moths)
Superfamily Noctuoidea
Family Noctuidae (Owlet Moths)
Subfamily Amphipyrinae
Tribe Amphipyrini
Genus Amphipyra
Species tragopoginis (Mouse Moth - Hodges#9639)
Hodges Number
9639
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)
Size
wingspan 32-40 mm
Identification
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
Range
every Canadian province except Manitoba and Saskatchewan
US distribution unknown/unavailable, other than presence in Arkansas and Ohio, and a BugGuide image of larva from Oregon
introduced to North America from the Old World, where it is native to Europe and western Asia
Season
adults fly from July to September
Food
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
Remarks
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.
Internet References
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 (NatureServe Explorer)