Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Tetracis crocallata Guenée, 1858
Tetracis aspilatata Guenée, 1858 (a pale spring form synonymized by Forbes, 1948)
Explanation of Names
Specific name crocallata
from the Greek krokos
meaning "saffron; of a saffron color", a reference to the wing color. (1)
Forewing length 17–25 mm.
Adult - DFW yellow or yellowish-white with straight brown transverse PM line from apex to inner margin and brown discal spot; DHW usually with brown discal spot and normally incomplete (sometimes absent) brown transverse median line. Underside as above, but less strongly marked. April specimens from Alabama are often irrorated with dark scales, similar maculation in Florida specimens is possible.
Larva - a twig mimic; young instars have brown head and green body with white intersegmental membranes; older instars have two morphs: (A) reddish-brown with 2 pairs dorsal and 2-3 pairs lateral white tubercles; T1 with forward projections tipped white (B) light brown to gray with no white tubercles; T1 projections present, but not white; morph B is similar to A. pampinaria but has no dorsal tubercles on A7 [adapted from description by Pedro Barbosa].
Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, southern Manitoba, southern Saskatchewan, to Alberta (Edmonton–Red Deer region), south to northern Florida, west to Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, and extreme eastern Texas.
A generalist regarding ecozones.
Adults occur mainly from May to early July on Block Island
, RI, but a partial second generation is on wing mainly in August.(2)
Larvae feed on leaves of alder, chestnut, sumac, willow.
Two generations in New York and southward, late May and August.
White Slant-Line (T. cachexiata) is a much paler cream-colored white, and has no discal spot or dusting of dark scales.
Ferris, C.D. & B.C. Schmidt 2010. Revision of the North American genera Tetracis
Guenée and synonymization of Synaxis
Hulst with descriptions of three new species (Lepidoptera: Geometridae: Ennominae). Magnolia Press Zootaxa 2347: 1–36 (PDF
live adult image
(Lynn Scott, Ontario)
(Larry Line, Maryland)
pinned adult image
(Dale Clark, Texas, dallasbutterflies.com)
pinned adult image
(James Adams, Dalton State College, Georgia)
live larva image
showing early instar, plus description (Pedro Barbosa, U. of Maryland)
larva and adult description
plus food plants and distribution (U. of Alberta)