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Species Lophocampa maculata - Spotted Tussock Moth - Hodges#8214

Spotted Tussock/Tiger Moth - Lophocampa maculata Spotted Tussock Moth caterpillar? - Lophocampa maculata 1779 Lophocampa maculata - Spotted Tussock or Tiger Moth 8214 - Lophocampa maculata Caterpillar - Lophocampa maculata Spotted Tussock Moth - Lophocampa maculata caterpillar - Lophocampa maculata Unknown Caterpillar - Lophocampa maculata mystery caterpiller - Lophocampa maculata
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 Lophocampa
Species maculata (Spotted Tussock Moth - Hodges#8214)
Hodges Number
8214
Other Common Names
Yellow-Spotted Tiger Moth
Mottled Tiger
halysidote maculée (French)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Lophocampa maculata Harris, 1841
*Phylogentic sequence #930373
Explanation of Names
"Tussock moth" for the tufts of hair on the caterpillar. (tussock = a tuft or clump of green grass or similar verdure, forming a small hillock--Wiktionary.)
Numbers
eleven Lophocampa species occur in America north of Mexico. (1)
Size
Wingspan 35-45 mm
Identification
Adult: forewing yellow with four brown bands, usually merged; partial fifth band extends inward from costa; partial band darkest where reniform spot normally occurs; hindwing pale yellow, translucent, unmarked
[adapted from description by Charles Covell]

Larva: black at both ends with 4 or 5 yellow or orange abdominal segments; numerous thin white lashes arise from black segments; yellow abdominal band broken by black or sometimes red middorsal tufts
[adapted from description at Caterpillars of Eastern Forests]
Range
across southern Canada, western US, south in Appalachians to South Carolina, Kentucky
Habitat
Forests with hostplants (deciduous trees), Canadian and Transition life zones
Season
adults fly from May to July
larvae from July to September
Food
Larvae prefer leaves of poplar and willow, but also feed on alder, basswood, birch, maple, oak
Life Cycle
one generation per year

Click on an image to view the life cycle:

Remarks
Some variation in the larva:
Eastern:


Rocky Mountain:


West coast:


Washington:



earlier instar:
See Also
Hickory Tussock Moth (Lophocampa caryae) forewing has separate spots that don't merge into a blotchy band, and its terminal line of spots doesn't merge with the outer margin
Banded Tussock Moth (Halysidota tessellaris) forewing has bands that are not merged, and are composed of irregular rectangular blocks; thorax has pastel turquoise stripes
Larva of Isabella Tiger Moth lacks thin white lashes arising from black segments
not to be confused with the Tussock Moths, family Lymantriidae
Print References
Covell, p. 73, plate 12 #9 (2)
Macromoths of Northwest Forests and Woodlands, #14, p. 34 (3)
Wagner, Caterpillars of Eastern Forests, p. 27 (4)
Powell, J.A. & P.A. Opler 2009. Moths of Western North America, pl. 48.20; p. 273. (5)
Internet References
Moth Photographers Group - photos of larve, live and pinned adults.
Macromoths of Northwest Forests and Woodlands pinned adult image by Jeff Miller, plus description, flight season, foodplants, similar species (USGS)
Lynn Scott, Ontario live adult images and dates
Canadian Biodiversity pinned adult image
North Dakota State University pinned adult and live larva image, plus technical description, distribution, foodplants
pinned adult image plus common name reference [Mottled Tiger] and other info (Strickland Entomological Museum, U. of Alberta)
live larva image by Charlene Houle, plus description, foodplants, seasonality, life cycle (Caterpillars of Eastern Forests, USGS)
distribution in Canada list of provinces (U. of Alberta, using CBIF data)
Works Cited
1.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 .
2.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.
3.Macromoths of Northwest Forests and Woodlands
Jeffrey Miller, Paul Hammond. 2000. USDA Forest Service, FHTET-98-18.
4.Caterpillars of Eastern Forests
David L. Wagner, Valerie Giles, Richard C. Reardon, Michael L. McManus. 1998. U.S. Dept of Agriculture, Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team.
5.Moths of Western North America
Powell and Opler. 2009. UC Press.