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Species Acontia cretata - Chalky Bird Dropping Moth - Hodges#9161

Acontia cretata Bird dropping moth - Acontia cretata Acontia cretata? - Acontia cretata Chalky Bird Dropping Moth? - Acontia cretata Chalky Bird Dropping Moth? - Acontia cretata Acontia Moth - Acontia cretata Arizona Moth - Acontia cretata Acontia cretata? - Acontia cretata
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Noctuoidea (Owlet Moths and kin)
Family Noctuidae (Owlet Moths)
Subfamily Acontiinae (Bird Dropping Moths)
Tribe Acontiini
Genus Acontia
Species cretata (Chalky Bird Dropping Moth - Hodges#9161)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Acontia cretata (Grote(1) & Robinson, 1870)
Tarache cretata Grote & Robinson, 1870
Phylogenetic sequence # 931375 (2)
Explanation of Names
cretata: from the Latin "creta" (chalk); "cretated" means rubbed with chalk - refers to the whitish color on the forewing, and is the origin of the suggested common name Chalky Bird Dropping Moth.
Wingspan 22-27 mm.
Adult: forewing mostly white basally, and dark green to blackish beyond PM line; amount of pearl-gray shading in basal half varies from almost none to almost complete; reniform spot either white or dark, bordered by pale yellowish-green shading on one or both sides; fringe scales usually white along lower half of outer margin, and dark along upper half; hindwing white, shading to brownish-gray at outer margin; fringe white.
Widespread throughout southern and central United States, as far north as extreme southern Saskatchewan, Canada and south into Mexico. (3), (4)
Adults fly from April to September.
Poole states the host is unknown. (5)
The larva are a host of the parasitoid braconid wasp Bracon mellitor. (6)
See Also
Acontia coquillettii has a cream yellow tinge to FW - see comparison at Nearctica
Print References
Grote, A.R. & C.T. Robinson, 1870. Description of American Lepidoptera, no. 5. Transactions of the American Entomological Society, 3: 181. (7)
Internet References
presence in California 8 specimen records with dates and locations (U. of California at Berkeley)