Adult: forewing similar to A. phalerata; hindwing usually has more reddish shading and broader, more solid black border; no form has entirely yellow hindwing
Also extremely similar to the Nais Tiger Moth, which replaces this species to the North and west of the Appalachian Mountains. In areas where both species could occur, dissection is recommended to distinguish between them.
Texas to Florida, north along the Atlantic Coastal Plain to at least North Carolina; has not been recorded in Canada
Adults fly from March to October.
Larvae feed on dandelions and other herbs.
Harnessed Tiger Moth
) forewing is virtually identical to A. vittata
but hindwing is usually more yellowish than reddish, with little or no black edging.
Nais Tiger Moth cannot be reliably separated from this species without dissection, but their ranges have minimal overlap; nais is virtually absent from the Gulf Coast and Florida, and vittata does not occur in the Appalachians, or to the north and west of them.
Covell, p. 69, plate 15 #5, 7 (1)
26 pinned adult images
and collection site map (All-Leps)
plus flight season and foodplants (Larry Line, Maryland) As per Chris Schmidt, the moth pictured on this Maryland site is in fact Apantesis phalerata, not A. vittata. A. vittata does not occur as far north as Maryland, and the records referenced on that site are almost certainly misidentified.
pinned adult image
(U. of Nebraska at Lincoln)
US distribution map
(butterfliesandmoths.org) There are many misidentified nais and phalerata on this page, and the range shown is much too expansive.