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Species Anisota virginiensis - Pink-striped Oakworm - Hodges#7723

moth2 - Anisota virginiensis Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Pair in copula - Anisota virginiensis - male - female Southern Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Hodges #7723 - Anisota virginiensis - female Pink-striped Oakworm Moth caterpillar - Anisota virginiensis Northern Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Anisota virginiensis Spiny oakworm - Anisota virginiensis pink striped oakworm moth - Anisota virginiensis - male Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Anisota virginiensis - female
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Bombycoidea (Silkworm, Sphinx, and Royal Moths)
Family Saturniidae (Giant Silkworm and Royal Moths)
Subfamily Ceratocampinae (Royal Moths)
Genus Anisota
Species virginiensis (Pink-striped Oakworm - Hodges#7723)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Anisota virginiensis (Drury)
Orig. Comb: Phalaena virginiensis Drury 1773
Explanation of Names
Kitching et al. (2018) treat A. v. pellucida (Smith, 1797) and A. v. discolor Ferguson, 1971 as full species.(1)
As BugGuide follows the classification at All-Leps (see discussion here) we recognize 3 subspecies of the Pink-striped Oakworm. For our purposes these are best defined by distribution as stated by Ferguson (2) (TT).
Anisota pellucida. See discussion here.
wingspan 33-45 mm (3); female larger than male; the female shown at CBIF has a wingspan of 52 mm
Adult males have pronounced hyaline (translucent) area on forewing, no black spotting. Females have no black spotting on wings, and purplish margin of wings, obvious on forewing in living specimens.
Caterpillar pink-striped, similar to stigma group, but easily identified.
Eastern North America - Map - (MPG)
3 subspecies:
A. virginiensis virginiensis - Northern Pink-striped Oakworm - as far south as North Carolina, except that on the coastal plain from Cape Hatteras (NC) south the southern ssp. occurs
A. virginiensis pellucida - Southern Pink-striped Oakworm - SE states from the coastal plain of NC at about Cape Hatteras to all of South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Louisiana
A. virginiensis discolor - Texas Pink-striped Oakworm - Texas

From the distribution map HERE one can imagine the borders between the 3 subspecies.
Also see Remarks section below.
One flight in north (early June into July). Two flights in mid-range: late July-early September. Three flights possible in south. Apparently the only Anisota species with a spring flight. (4)
Life Cycle
Some pupae overwinter until spring.
The key to the subspecies (from (2)):
- Northeastern region south to North Carolina . . . . . . . . . . . virginiensis virginiensis
- South Carolina to Florida, west to Louisiana . . . . . . . . . . . virginiensis pellucida
(but see comment regarding coastal plain of NC under Range)
- Texas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .virginiensis discolor
See Also

The caterpillar of Anisota stigma is similar, but colors are different
Print References
Ferguson, Saturniidae (2)
Tuskes, Wild Silk Moths of North America (4)
Works Cited
1.A global checklist of the Bombycoidea (Insecta: Lepidoptera)
Kitching, I., R. Rougerie, A. Zwick, C. Hamilton, R. St Laurent, S. Naumann, L. Ballesteros Mejia, A. Kawahara. 2018. Biodiversity Data Journal, 6: e22236.
2.MONA - Saturniidae
D.C. Ferguson. 1971. E.W. Classey & R.D.B. Publications Inc.
3.Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America
Charles V. Covell, Jr. 2005.
4.The Wild Silk Moths of North America: A Natural History of the Saturniidae of the United States and Canada
Paul M. Tuskes, James P. Tuttle, Michael M. Collins. 1996. Cornell University Press.