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Species Catocala ilia - Ilia Underwing - Hodges#8801

Caterpiller - Catocala ilia Catocala ilia ? - Catocala ilia Mystery caterpillar - Catocala ilia underwing - Catocala ilia Erebidae: Catocala ilia? - Catocala ilia Ilia Underwing - Catocala ilia ? Catocala piatrix - Catocala ilia Catocala ilia
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 Erebidae
Subfamily Erebinae
Tribe Catocalini
Genus Catocala (Underwings)
Species ilia (Ilia Underwing - Hodges#8801)
Hodges Number
Other Common Names
The Wife
Beloved Underwing
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Catocala ilia (Cramer, [1775]) (1), (2), (3), (4)
Phalaena ilia Cramer, [1775]
Catocala ilia var. conspicua Worthington, 1883 (5), (6), (4)
Catocala ilia var. decorata Worthington, 1883 (5), (6), (4)
Catocala ilia var. obsoleta Worthington, 1883 (5), (6), (4)
Catocala ilia var. duplicata Worthington, 1883 (5), (4)
Catocala ilia var. albomacula Butler, 1892 (284), (4)
Catocala ilia var. normani Bartsch, 1916 (3), (4)
Catocala ilia var. hulsti Reiff, 1920 (4)
Catocala ilia var. satanas Reiff, 1920 (4)
Explanation of Names
Specific epithet likely for Ilia (alternately Rhea Silvia), the mythical mother of the twins Romulus and Remus, who founded the city of Rome. Ilia was a Vestal Virgin and the god Mars fathered the twins. Another possibility is the oldest daughter of King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy, but most sources use the spelling Ilione.
Wingspan 65-82 mm. (7)
Forewing length 32-36 mm. (8)
Adult - forewing color varies from grayish-brown to completely black; forewing usually with some whitish in median area; reniform spot usually outlined with white (or solid white in form "conspicua"); AM line broad, black, and relatively straight, contrasting against paler median area; hindwing median band reddish-orange or dark pink with deep scallops near anal angle; sometimes rests with wings partly open, revealing parts of two colored bands and two black bands; fringe pale orangish, narrow except at apex.
Per Wagner (2005), most caterpillars are gray and essentially bark-colored, but very occasionally spectacular lichen mimics are encountered. (9) Examples of each larval form:
Most of eastern North America, the Pacific Northwest south to California and east to western Colorado, New Mexico and western Texas. (8)
Adults fly June to September. (8)
Larvae feed on leaves of oak: (10)
Quercus alba
Quercus macrocarpa
Quercus rubra
Quercus velutina
One of the East's most abundant underwings. (9)
See Also
Catocala umbrosa forewing lacks conspicuous white outline around reniform spot (compare images of both species at CBIF)
Catocala aholibah - hindwings of C. ilia are more orange and C. aholibah's are deep red with a slight purple tint. The forewing of C. ilia is lighter. (11)
Print References
Barnes, Wm. & J.H. McDunnough, 1918. Illustrations of the North American species of the genus Catocala. Memoirs of the AMNH 2(1): p.18; Pl.6, f.4-7; Pl.12, f.9 (larva). (3)
Brou, V.A., 2003. Catocala ilia (Cramer) and form umbrosa in Louisiana. Southern Lepidopterists' News 24: 48-50.
Cramer, P., 1775. De uitlandsche kapellen voorkomende in de drie waereld-deelen, Asia, Africa en America 1: 53; Pl.33, f. B,C.
Works Cited
1.On the North American species of Catocala.
Augustus Radcliffe Grote. 1872. Transactions of the American Entomological Society 4: 1-20.
2.The genus Catocala.
George. D. Hulst. 1884. Bulletin of the Brooklyn Entomological Society 7(1): 14-56.
3.Illustrations of the North American species of the genus Catocala.
William Barnes, James Halliday McDunnough. 1918. Memoirs of the AMNH 2(1).
4.Systematics of moths in the genus Catocala (Lepidoptera, Erebidae) IV. Nomenclatorial stabilization of the ....
Lawrence Gall, David Hawks. 2010. Zookeys 39: 37-83.
5.On certain Catocalae.
C.E. Worthington. 1883. Papilio 3(2): 39-41.
6.Systematics of moths in the genus Catocala (Noctuidae). II.
Gall, Lawrence F. 1990. Psyche 97: 121-130.
7.Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America
Charles V. Covell, Jr. 2005.
8.Moths of Western North America
Powell and Opler. 2009. UC Press.
9.Caterpillars of Eastern North America
David L. Wagner. 2005. Princeton University Press.
10.HOSTS - The Hostplants and Caterpillars Database
11.Pacific Northwest Moths
12.North American Moth Photographers Group
13.Bill Oehlke's North American Catocala