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Genus Tolype

Tolype species - Tolype - female Tolype dayi Tolype - Tolype velleda - female Tolype laricis - Larch Tolype? - Tolype laricis - male Tolype velleda? - Tolype Tolype distincta Large Tolype - Tolype velleda Tolype austella
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Lasiocampoidea (Tent Caterpillar and Lappet Moths)
Family Lasiocampidae (Tent Caterpillar and Lappet Moths)
Subfamily Poecilocampinae
Genus Tolype
toe-LIP-EE (?)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Tolype Hübner, 1820
Explanation of Names
From Greek tolype (τολυπη), "a ball of wool or yarn, lump" (Internet searches). Appears related to Greek root tolyp meaning "wind up".
Compare Tolypeutes, a genus of armadillos, known for curling into a ball.
Eleven Tolype species are found the America north of Mexico. (1)(2)
wingspan 26-58 mm
Adult: Two widespread eastern species are Small Tolype (T. notialis) and Large Tolype (T. velleda). The postmedian line on the forewing is more wavy in T. notialis, less wavy in T. velleda. Also, T. notialis is usually a darker gray, and T. velleda a paler gray. Compare T. velleda/T. notialis:

However, there is considerable variation among individuals and between the sexes of all Tolype species, which complicates identification of species based on color (see Moth Photographers Group)
Tolype minta is whitish with gray lines, is southern, found from South Carolina to Florida.
T. laricis has a more northern distribution, the male is blackish, and the female is similar to the Large Tolype (see Internet refernces).
represented througout United States and southern Canada; T. laricis is the most widespread species, occurring coast to coast in southern Canada and northern United States
depending on species, deciduous, mixed, or coniferous forests; adults are nocturnal and come to light
varies according to species; adults fly from April to December in the south; mostly August and September in the north
larvae of T. velleda feed on leaves of hardwood trees
larvae of several other Tolype species feed on conifers
Life Cycle
up to three generations per year in the south; one generation in the north
Print References
Covell, p. 53, plate 8 (3)
Internet References
pinned adult images of males and females of 4 species occurring in Canada (CBIF)
live adult images of male T. laricis (Lynn Scott, Ontario)
live larva image of T. laricis (Chris Maier, Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station,
distribution in Canada of 4 species list of provinces for each species (CBIF)
Works Cited
1.The Moths of America North of Mexico. Fascicle 20.1. Mimallonoidea (Mimallonidae) and Bombycoidea.....
J. G. Franclemont. 1973. E.W. Classey Ltd. & R.B.D. Publications Inc.
2.North American Moth Photographers Group
3.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.