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Species Xestia badicollis - Northern Variable Dart - Hodges#10968

Xestia badicollis (?) - Xestia badicollis Xestia praevia  ? - Xestia badicollis Pennsylvania Moth - Xestia badicollis moth - Xestia badicollis - male Northern Variable Dart - Xestia badicollis Xestia badicollis (Northern Variable Dart) 10968 - Xestia badicollis Xestia badicollis northern variable dart - Xestia badicollis
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 Noctuinae (Cutworm or Dart Moths)
Tribe Noctuini
Subtribe Noctuina
Genus Xestia
Species badicollis (Northern Variable Dart - Hodges#10968)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Anomogyna badicollis
wingspan 32-45 mm
larva length to 25 mm
Adult: forewing gray with slight red or pink shading; lines sharp to obscure, usually widening into spots at costa; black shading on basal side of orbicular spot, and reddish-brown shading between orbicular and reniform spots, with thin black edge underneath; hindwing dark grayish-brown (1)

Larva: body variably green, brown, grayish-brown, or grayish-green with tiny yellowish-white speckles; head greenish; middorsal stripe narrow, faint; subdorsal stripe white; spiracular stripe narrow, dark green; subspiracular stripe broad, speckled, yellowish-white; subventral stripe white, narrow, fragmented [C.T. Maier et al]
Nova Scotia to North Carolina, west to Missouri and Ontario
mixed and coniferous woodlands; adults are nocturnal and come to light
adults fly from late July to October, but are most numerous in late August and early September
larvae present from late fall to July (overwinter)
larvae feed mainly on White Pine; other hosts include Balsam Fir, Eastern Hemlock, Eastern Larch, White Spruce, and Northern White-cedar
Life Cycle
one generation per year; overwinters as a larva
See Also
Praevia Dart (Xestia praevia) is very similar but has a darker and more uniformly brown forewing, larger black marking basal to orbicular spot, and darker and less distinct AM and PM lines; paler individuals of praevia may be very difficult to distinguish from badicollis. The two are most easily separated by flight time. X. praevia flies from late June through early August, and is most numerous in July. By the time fresh X. badicollis begin flying in late July, most X. praevia are very worn, and when X. badicollis flight peaks in early September, X. praevia is essentially done flying for the year.
Works Cited
1.Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America
Charles V. Covell, Jr. 2005.