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Species Euchaetes egle - Milkweed Tussock Moth - Hodges#8238

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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 Erebidae
Subfamily Arctiinae (Tiger and Lichen Moths)
Tribe Arctiini (Tiger Moths)
Subtribe Phaegopterina
Genus Euchaetes
Species egle (Milkweed Tussock Moth - Hodges#8238)
Hodges Number
8238
Other Common Names
Milkweed Tiger Moth, Milkweed Tussock Caterpillar (larva), Harlequin Caterpillar (larva)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Euchaetes egle (Drury, 1773)
* phylogenetic sequence #930412
Explanation of Names
Author of species is Drury 1773, as Phalaena egle, presumably. The origin of the species name is not clear. Egle is a character in a Lithuanian folk tale, but it is also a surname. (Based on Internet searches.)
Size
Wingspan 32-43 mm (1)
Identification
Wings usually unmarked gray, abdomen yellow with black spots.

Range
eastern half of US plus Quebec and Ontario
Habitat
Fields, edges, etc. with host plant
Season
Adult: May-September (two flights in much of range). Caterpillars found starting in June (2).
Life Cycle
Larvae feed on milkweed, Asclepias species. Adults sometimes found on hostplant during day (1). Females lay eggs in "rafts" and caterpillars are gregarious during instars 1-3, solitary in later instars, when marked with bright tufts. May defoliate patches of milkweed (2) (3).
See Also
Print References
Covell, p. 74, plate 12 #17 (1)
Wagner, p. 474--photos of larva and adult (2)
Rea, p. 65 (3)
Lafontaine J. D., and B. C. Schmidt 2010. Annotated check list of the Noctuoidea (Insecta, Lepidoptera) of North America North of Mexico. (4)
Internet References
Moth Photographers Group - range map, photos of living and pinned adults.
BOLD - Barcode of Life Data Systems - species account with collection map and photos of pinned adults.
Works Cited
1.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.
2.Caterpillars of Eastern North America
David L. Wagner. 2005. Princeton University Press.
3.Milkweed, Monarchs and More: A Field Guide to the Invertebrate Community in the Milkweed Patch
Ba Rea, Karen Oberhauser, Michael Quinn. 2003. Bas Relief Publishing Group.
4.Annotated check list of the Noctuoidea (Insecta, Lepidoptera) of North America north of Mexico.
Donald J. Lafontaine, B. Christian Schmidt. 2010. ZooKeys 40: 1–239 .