Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Acontia aprica (Hübner, 
Noctua aprica Hübner, 
N. alboater Haworth, 1809
Acontia biplaga Guenée, 1852
A. unocula Freyer, 1849
A. redita Felder and Rogenhofer, 1874
Phylogenetic sequence #931343 (1)
34 species of Tarache
are found in America north of Mexico.(1)
Adult: sexually dimorphic - male forewing white basally with two black patches along costa, the distal patch merging with general blackish shading beyond PM line, leaving white patch near apex; female forewing mostly dark gray or blackish except for two white patches along costa, and some white at base and outer margin; small black orbicular spot surrounded by white, and usually prominent in both sexes hindwing whitish or pale gray; dark grayish-brown shading along outer margin in female only
specimen identified by DNA analysis (BOLD) from Mark Dreiling
. . . . . .
Larva: Chunky, green- to brown-mottled often with prominent black spot around spiracle on A1. Small swellings above spiracles on abdomen (evident when larva is at rest). Face flattened, heavily mottled with black, appreciably darker than posterior half of head; jet black spot above each antenna; labrum and triangle with lower half filled with black (inset). Prothoracic shield strongly pigmented; some forms with hint of orange spiracular line passing through first two thoracic segments. Dorsal pinacula pimplelike, small embedded in black spot; enlarged over A8. Vague, zigzagging lateral stripe dropping down prolegs on A5 and A6. Hump over A8 rounded. Spiracles black with white halo. Thoracic legs with black bands. Larva to 3 cm.
gardens, fields, open areas; adults can be flushed from plants during the day
adults fly from March to September in the south; reduced season in the north
Ponometia candefacta) has greenish-yellowish shading and large dark reniform spot on forewing.
. . . . . . . . .
P. erastrioides), blackish patch on forewing does not reach costa or outer margin
. . . . . . . . .
the Four-spotted Bird Dropping Moth (Tarache tetragona) is similar to T. aprica but orbicular spot usually obscured by blackish medial shading, not surrounded by white as in T. aprica
in the southwest, a number of other Tarache species look similar to aprica
is consistently a smaller species than aprica
. The forewing expanse of tetragona
is 7 to 8 mm. from base to apex compared to about 10 mm. in aprica
. The male hindwing below of tetragona
lacks the dark costal marking found in aprica
. The female hindwing of aprica
is always white at its base. In contrast the female hindwing of tetragona
is uniformly tan-brown. The hindwing of the male of quadriplaga
has a consistently dull yellow-brown hindwing and not the white hindwing of aprica
. The hindwing of a female quadriplaga
is completely tan-brown. In contrast the hindwing of the female aprica
hindwing is white with a dark grayish outer margin Nearctica
Powell, J.A. & P.A. Opler 2009. Moths of Western North America
. University of California Press, pl. 50, fig. 25; p. 280. (2)
distribution in Canada
only Ontario and Quebec (CBIF)